A couple of kids driving drunk down rock ‘n’ roll’s highway.
7.5 / 10.0
Foxygen, new indie rock band or enigma? Their talent is undeniable. They cannot be tied to classification. The fact that I’m older than both members hurts my pride. Yes, these are thoughts that ran through my head while listening to Foxygen’s seven-song debut, Take The Kids Off Broadway. Don’t let the short track length fool you. Coming in shy of 37 minutes, Foxygen push the boundaries of what is allowed in a 3 or 4 minute song, pulling apart until the cocoon finally opens and reveals something beautiful and strange. I guess it’s safe to say that Take The Kids Off Broadway could be the year’s most interesting debut.
Smartly snatched up by Jagjaguwar, Foxygen, the duo of Sam France (vocals) and Jonathan Rado (guitar/keyboards), are an oil spill that cannot be capped. Ideas flow freely and mesh together in an improvised serendipity. Recalling the likes of the Rolling Stones, David Bowie, and the Jackson 5, Foxygen play hopscotch with musical genres, landing on ’50s pop, ’70s rock, psychedelia, blues, and stoner rock. While Take The Kids Off Broadway‘s songs usually top out just over 4 minutes, Foxygen’s rapid fire spontaneity stretches them to seemingly longer distances. It’d be the same result if someone crammed the Lord of the Rings Trilogy into one film.
However, Foxygen do use one song, “Teenage Alien Blues”, to flesh out in a full ten minutes. With such declarations as, “I see babies talk”, the song is a bluesy psychedelic acid trip with even Sam France mentioning acid use. Just when the song begins running out of steam, the duo turn up the bass and touching on elements of funk before deviating into elevator music. Trust me, it all works together. That same kind of freestyle gumption is alive throughout Take The Kids Off Broadway, even invading Foxygen’s most cohesive song, “Why Did I Get Married?”. France and Rado just can’t help themselves. Many listeners may be put off by the duo’s scatterbrained presentation, but Foxygen’s debut is likely to become a landmark in an impressive career of mind-bending music.
Purchase: Foxygen – Take The Kids Off Broadway