Lorenzo Goetz | The Heavy EP (Self-Released)

Simply put, their music has a solid groove that will make you move, with lyrics both catchy and witty—meaning you won’t have to cringe every time you find yourself singing along.

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“Party band” has such negative connotations, so I mean this in the best way possible when I use that term to describe Champaign, Ill.’s Lorenzo Goetz. Simply put, their music has a solid groove that will make you move, with lyrics both catchy and witty—meaning you won’t have to cringe every time you find yourself singing along.

This six-song EP is the follow-up to 2004’s Jesus Elephant, and what it lacks in length it makes up for in quality. The intro track, the hard-hitting “Heavy,” finds vocalist/guitarist Larry Gates in the throes of lust: “Holy cow, hold it now, slow it down,” he warns in his trademark white-boy indie-rock hip-hop before finally admitting, “God damn, nothing can be greater than/pulling up in the van, making out to the Beta Band.”

Following “Run There,” a mellow, head-bob–inducing song, is “Designs,” kicked off by Gates’ spoken proclamation: “I’m gonna sing it like that chubby boy on American Idol.” The grooves are deep on this track, heightened by the plink-plink of a synth, the words extensive, mad-rushing like playful poetry. Gates sings of a girl who “sorta had designs on me, so to speak/broke into my mind right in front of me.” In keeping with the themes of love and lust, Gates speak-sings of waking up with “a head full of bliss/and a couple kisses gonna get us/further down the mattress”; later, in a sly, self-referential nod, he admits to “going two rounds with that same dame from ‘Heavy.’”

There’s more song than speech on “Slumber Jaw,” the refrain of which makes me laugh every time: “Sleeping with my shirt on/well so far so good/we could just move along/but if the holy ghost gets involved/we’re gonna call it off.” With its south-of-the-border influences, “La Salvadora” closes out the EP. A flamenco vibe brings the tempo down a notch while keeping the loin fires burning—olé! If you haven’t yet heard this groovin’ Midwestern foursome, The Heavy EP is a fun and sultry introduction, and for fans of Jesus Elephant and debut EP Allure, Heavy is serious fun.

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