The Church of Rock and Roll

Foxy Shazam

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The Church of Rock and Roll Review

by Gregory Heaney

Foxy Shazam always felt like a band that was looking to bring "over-the-top" back to rock & roll, pushing the envelope on bombast as if their mission was to make Sparks seem not only straitlaced, but dull by comparison. On The Church of Rock and Roll, however, it seems that change is in the air. From the album's titular opening track, where singer Eric Nally proclaims, "Your music sucks including us, it's time we clear our name," to the stark mission statement in the liner notes that lets the listener know, "Foxy Shazam is a jet plane going down and we have been playing the same tune the whole way. It just sounds different the closer we get to the ground," it's clear that the band is looking to reinvent itself. While songs like "Holy Touch" and "I Like It" still feel like the Foxy Shazam of years past, the winds of change can definitely be felt throughout the album. The band certainly hasn't lost their flair for the theatric, but instead of doing it with near-operatic blasts of rock energy, Foxy Shazam channels that energy into tighter, dancefloor-ready tracks. "I Wanna Be Yours" marches its way forward without ever losing control, giving the song a relatively restrained feeling that sort of gets to the heart of what the band is trying to do with the album. Rather than looking ever upwards for new ideas with soaring guitars and pure rock & roll grandeur, Foxy Shazam are expanding outwards, absorbing a whole new set of tools into their songwriting arsenal as they give their sound an overhaul. Even though the album has a transitional feeling, Foxy Shazam still manage to make their sonic renovation a fun ride, and The Church of Rock and Roll is an entertaining stop on the musical journey.

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