By: Maria Ciezak
I want to either introduce you or reconnect you with a sonically stunning listening treat. Instruments that blend together in a chaotic fusion, creating a huge sound, without getting lost in an ocean full of clatter. Foxy Shazam; their name is even cool. I found these guys in Spin Magazine’s Top 10 Artists to Watch in 2010. At first glance, my initial reaction of the band was wondering what the hell was going on. It’s merrily overblown pomp-rock that hasn’t ascended since the glory days of Queen (you will see the distinct Queen influence in Oh Lord and Unstoppable). The quintet from Cincinnati is assuring that their self-titled release will tweak the listeners. Theyâ€™ve stated their goal in various interviews, â€œto be the biggest, most ostentatious band on the planetâ€. Front man, Eric Nally, embraces the Adam Lambert/Freddy Mercury similarities; proving high hitting males are vocally vivacious. He’s got the pipes, glam, and attitude to spare. I’ve seen them live, and any musician that sticks lit cigarettes in his mouth for pure entertainment value is a performer in my book (kids, don’t try this at home).
Nally doesnâ€™t want anyone to sticker him or his band as punk (I tend to wonder why people are considering Foxy Shazam punk anyway). But what you may have to wonder is why wouldnâ€™t a band want the stamp of consent from the punk community? After all, many bands have arena success in that genre. Plain and simple, they want their attention to hipsters. The album is pure entertainment entirely, only thing lacking is the direct definition in the lyrics, for I find them confusing at times (â€œSo long to the second floor, itâ€™s been fun but I donâ€™t belong, up there with the industry or up there with you wolvesâ€) — this is a pure example of the oddity brilliance; it blends serious topics with outrageous humor. But in its defense, it keeps you listening to search for deeper meaning. Foxy Shazam has been called the Evel Knievel of Rock N Roll; eccentric enchanting drama rock. They’re a spot on group with various characteristic essentials; a balls-out keyboard player, a kick-in-the-face trumpet player, and a front-man we canâ€™t rave about enough. The theatrics are so predominant in tracks such as Wanna-Be Angel and Killin’ It that it’s almost as if your watching the album in a Broadway theatre. Your ears will pick up a plethora of double-kick drum percussion, and a maniacal mix of piano, for the whole record is fully deranged. Still not convinced? Influences include: Marvin Gaye, Elton John, Van Morrison, and Iggy Pop. That’s like all the popular people in school sharing one locker. Shit, this is genre-defying music if I’ve ever heard it.
This self-titled release is one of the best of the year in my collection. You know why? Because I wanted a throwback to rockâ€™s golden age when go ahead singers werenâ€™t fearful to go a little mad, and the whole endeavor was all about having fun, in an artsy kind of way. And dammit, thatâ€™s just what they gave me.
Check out some music that is sexy and attractive, and flat out Foxy.