Foxygen, to be real, popped up on my radar this week when they received the coronation of Pitchfork’s Best New Music honor with an 8.4 review of their new one, the long-titled We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic. Hoo, it’s a mouthful! But it’s also pretty awesome. You’ll find it in the paper this week in our On The Record column, and then this lil’ gem of a studio session showed up on the NPR website today, recorded right here in our fair city.
Sam France and Jonathan Rado grew up in California. They started jamming and listening to classic rock as teens, even making records as early as 16. They loved stuff like The Doors, Neil Young, and The Beatles but also The Clash and Bob Dylan. Funny how the old becomes new again with each generation, isn’t it? And even how the music you get into as a teenager dictates the kind of musician you become. That is to say, this new record, their second, isn’t a ‘If You’re Going To California’ moment, but you can hear the Zep and the Stones serving as a bedrock for their shoegazey and slightly psychedelic lo-fi fuzz rock. Word is that they found Dig!, the great rock doc feautring The Dandy Warhols and, more importantly, the Brian Jonestown Massacre, and took Anton Newcombe’s insane-but-talented multi-instrumental approach to record-making to heart. They started playing as many instruments as they could. S’good place to start. If you haven’t seen Dig! you really should get your hands on it.
They’re in good company on their tour and on their label – signed to Jagjaguwar (Remember when Bon Iver’s For Emma, Forever Ago was fresh and B.I. wasn’t a ubiquitious sensitive white man presence in indie rock? He got signed to Jagjaguwar to release that one) and touring with Unknown Mortal Orchestra. And speaking of NPR, they’re featuring UMO’s great new record, II, on their First Listen feature right now. UMO’s an American and New Zealand creation who are unveiling THEIR sophomore on February 5 via JagJag, too. They also specialize in vaguely stonerific garage rock, so these two bands are clearly meant for each other. By the by, Foxygen’s new one is available on Spotify right now and it’s definitely worth your time.
So these two together should make for a great lineup of a show that’s only five-ish weeks away. And you know what? It’s not at Union Transfer! It’s at the Church. I don’t know about you, but, I could go for a solid Church night sometime soon. S’been a while. It’s on Friday, March 1st and it’s a $12-$13 ticket.