Review Summary: I'm alright, it's time I've moved on
The concept of getting up and moving on has always been a prominent lyrical centerpiece within any genre. Whether it’s moving on from the past or picking yourself up after heartbreak, artists seem to cling to this idea of starting again new. Foxing’s Dealer
does just this in many aspects beyond lyrical content, setting themselves apart from their own past.
For Foxing, moving on doesn’t mean abandonment. In fact, musically, Dealer
is an expansion of their sound, the next logical step for the band. They stay true to what set them apart from other emo bands with their continued incorporation of the trumpet, unique drumming, and atmospheric qualities. Yet this album is self-aware. It truly aims at becoming a cohesive album instead of a collection of songs, something The Albatross attempted to achieve yet didn’t develop fully. Each song bleeds into the next, and as the songs get started, their individuality shines through, setting themselves apart from one another. Transitions, like the ones from 'The Magdalene' to 'Night Channels' and 'Eiffel' to 'Coda', showcase Foxing’s ability to connect their ideas and themes musically.
Progressing from their previous work, Foxing’s sound strays away from emotionally charged vocal deliveries and explosive choruses. This isn’t to say that the climaxes are unsuccessful, because they truly are accomplished in many cases. Whether it’s the subtle crescendos in the instrumental track 'Winding Cloth', or the powerful lyrical climaxes framed by uplifting instrumentals found in 'Eiffel', Foxing excels at producing dynamic apexes. There is an obvious post-rock influence within their music, as many songs seem to take their time to develop, yet Foxing sets themselves apart from the genre as almost all songs stay under the 5-minute mark. The lush atmosphere that the instruments induce composes a dream-like quality to the entire album. The twinkly guitar stays in the background for most of the album, but cuts through when needed to generate peaks within individual tracks. The drums push the songs forward and add the needed movement within each track dynamically. Each instrument clearly has its role, yet all of them are united throughout the album.
Advancing their sound while enhancing the beauty of their music is exactly what Dealer
sets out to do. In many cases, like on the tracks 'Indica' and 'Three on a Match', it succeeds, as the true beauty of the music glistens. Other songs fall just short like on 'Laundered' and 'Redwoods', as they are unable to build to something meaningful. Overall, Foxing has gotten past the dangerous game of recreating the past, and has instead constructed something that brilliantly moves on.