Review Summary: You cannot escape these choruses.
Cincinnati's Foxy Shazam! are one of the stranger bands to come out of the midwest in...well, ever. Their 2005 debut, The Flamingo Trigger
, combined pop hooks, breakdowns, amazing piano-playing, surreal lyrics, airplane noises, and just plain madness into forty-plus minutes of fun and confusion. This time around, Foxy have stripped themselves of their aggression in favor of even more pop sensibility. While not as musically inventive as their debut, Introducing
is surely one of the catchiest rock albums you will ever here.
Foxy Shazam! are:
Eric Nally - Vocals
Lauren Turner - Guitar
Schuyler White - Piano/Keys
Daisy - Bass
Joseph Halberstadt - Drums
I'm going to be up front here--"The Science of Love" may be the catchiest song I've ever heard. Literally every time I hear anything about Foxy Shazam!, its chorus immediately pops into my head and stays there for weeks. Close behind "The Science of Love" in terms of hooks is "Red Cape Diver," with its mighty chorus of "Fire torpedoes, kiss your lolitas, let them know you might die." Schuyler White's piano and Eric Nally's relentless energy complete dominate every aspect of this album. While those two were the highlights of The Flamingo Trigger
, everybody got a moment to shine on that album. Here, the other three members take a backseat.
Also gone from the debut is the band's heaviness. There are no songs like "Across the Golden Field" or "NO! Don't Shoot," with their utterly ridiculous breakdowns and palm-muted riffs under Mally's unique screams. Every song on Introducing
is pure piano-driven power-pop--although the band did not lose their penchant for the ridiculous (see: the lyrics to "Ghost Animals"). There is nothing inherently wrong with that--every song on the album is solid--but after their wild debut, it feels like Foxy are playing it safe, or at least as safe as they are capable of playing. There is not a bad track on this record, but there is nothing that will blow a listener out of the water like "The French Passion Animality Opera" or the pair of songs mentioned above.
However, this album does have as many, if not more hooks than the debut did. The songs on Introducing
latch onto your mind, and their grip is much stronger than anything Lady GaGa has ever done. White's piano-lines are mesmerizing, and Nally's singing is improved at the expense of his manic shrieks. When deciding between Foxy Shazam! albums, it really depends on the listener. If you are looking for a super-creative and diverse album, The Flamingo Trigger
is the way to go. But if you just want pure fun or have trouble with anything heavier than Weezer, get Introducing
. Just prepare to have your mind plagued by Eric Nally for the rest of your days.