Wax Fang: La La Land

By: Dennis Cook

This is a journey and if you consciously forget to pack preconceptions in your bindle then you're gonna have a great time with Wax Fang's La La Land (released October 14 on Don't Panic Records), which trundles headlong like a modern day child of Their Satanic Majesties Request or Magical Mystery Tour punctured by angular, darkly hued '80s post-punk and sprinkled with bone deep amusement. Where "World War II (Pt. 2)" captures Queen's pomp, "Cannibal Summer" is post-modern thickness stuffed with cock rockin' riffs. Their laughter hangs out on "The Doctor Will See You Now," which encourages us to stay away from medical practitioners unless there's something actually wrong with us. "Avant Guardian Angel Dust" is like something Eno-Byrne might cook up if they weren't so sleepy together, and Wax Fang perfectly follows it with a beguilingly folksy ditty, "Oh, Recklessness," expanding on the stillness of the previous instrumental but not succumbing to it. And they take similar turns throughout, shifting away from each movement with subtle intelligence, so it makes sense for the pretty bits to mingle with the near metal-prog of "Black & Endless Night Revisited" or other prickly bits. Ending by telling us "Wake Up, Sleepyhead," Wax Fang trail off in a cloud of twinkling lights that illuminate tattered stars 'n' stripes, a bruised sort of patriotism that celebrates liberty by living with few constrictions.

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[Published on: 10/20/08]

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Comments

Jukebox Hero Mon 10/20/2008 06:59PM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Jukebox Hero

Great review. This album came out in 2007, but I guess it's just now getting a large label release, which I'm glad to see. The Queen & Eno/Byrne (much more Remain in Light than My Life in the Bush of Ghosts) references are right on, but I hear some unmistakable Wall-era Floyd, Explosions in the Sky-like post-rock stuff, and even some Pogue-ish barroom stomp going on as well. Album opener "The Majestic" doesn't get mentioned in the review, but I think it's the strongest track on the record, one of my favorite songs to come out in the past year. If you're a fan of big of big guitars and shout along lyrics as well as lots of loud/soft dynamics, then you should pick this up. Also, Scott Carney (songwriter, singer and lead guitarist) is one hell of a performer. I know they haven't toured in some time, but definitely check them out if they come through your town. These guys stole the show at Lebowskifest a few years ago, rocking out the full sow in skin-tight red jumpsuits a la the nihilists in Dude's dream. A real fucking spectacle. Always good to see another Louisville band make good. I hope this album gets the attention it deserves now that it is out on a real record label.

WidespreadMule3 Tue 10/21/2008 12:12PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

WidespreadMule3

I'm really glad someone reviewed this and put it up on jambase. I just picked up this album about a month ago and it's been in steady rotation in my car. They have an amazing sound...really unique. The closest I could describe them would be David Bowie fronting My Morning Jacket...but thats not really a good explanation to how awesome they sound. Really look forward to hearing more from these boys.

redhed starstarstarstarstar Tue 10/21/2008 02:19PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

redhed

Louisville gettin some love. The Fang rocks, they have a cover of the misfits Halloween that is amazing. Its on a cd comp called Louisville Babylon.+