The Church Of Rock And Roll Review

artist: Foxy Shazam date: 03/07/2012 category: compact discs
Foxy Shazam: The Church Of Rock And Roll
Released: Jan 24, 2012
Genre: Rock & Roll, Soul, Progressive Rock
Label: I.R.S.
Number Of Tracks: 11
Overall the album is interesting, and has it's ups and downs. More downs than I would have preferred as this is one of the few band's I've been enjoying from this generation.
 Sound: 8
 Lyrics: 7.3
 Overall Impression: 8.3
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reviews (3) 6 comments vote for this album:
overall: 6.3
The Church Of Rock And Roll Reviewed by: Igamikun, on january 27, 2012
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Sound: I would like to go on note saying I was pretty hopeful for this record, and also go on note saying I have not been a fan since "The Flamingo Trigger". I have been a fan since "Introducing..." came out, and I feel they have been continually improving as a band. So back to the topic of being hopeful, I definitely have to say I feel a little bit let down. Don't get me wrong I haven't come out feeling completely negative about my experience listening to this album. Previous explanations of the process claimed they were going for a more raw underproduced sound. I can't hear this as the quality is pretty crisp and most songs have great clarity. Some tracks differ drastically from the ridiculousness of previous songs fans may be used to such as "The Streets" which sounds kind of like a 50's soulful song about being raised on the streets, and "(It's) Too Late Baby" has a melancholy-ish sound and it holds more seriousness than fans may be used to. Overall the sound isn't unlistenable but sometimes falls into a territory that you probably wouldn't want to get caught listening to with your car window's down. // 7

Lyrics: This is where I felt let down in the album. Their earlier fare had interesting theatrical lyrics which made me think more of Queen, or some form of opera at least. I feel they have waded into a more generic rock territory with the lyrics on this album. 4 tracks specifically make me feel like this. "Welcome To The Church Of Rock And Roll", "I Like It", "Holy Touch" and "I Wanna Be Yours". Each song has a drastically repeated chorus (3-4 times) which just makes me feel like they wanted to push the album out and they needed filler material. Some of the other songs have a more listenable interesting sound, but for the most part what I enjoyed is still different than their previous material so some fans may be let down. Eric's vocals are still superb in any case which leaves me in the middle of the road here. // 5

Overall Impression: If I had an order of where their albums place in favoritism, this one would be right above "The Flamingo Trigger" for me, which is the album I liked the least (I don't listen to any "core" type music and the random-mess, and screaming thing doesn't do it for me with music). "Introducing..." was and still is my favorite, and their self title had some other songs I really enjoyed and I thought the direction of the album was interesting. This album as stated before feels mostly like filler. I do enjoy a handful of songs... Actually make that more like a palmful. Even though it's repetitive I enjoy the song "Holy Touch", it has an uplifting sound, and though the lyrics seem religious if you watch the video on their YouTube channel it is making fun of Televangelists with their convulsive demon releasing touching. Funny stuff. "It's Too Late Baby" is enjoyable and is it's own unique song, and has a very interesting solo in it as well. "Wasted Feelings" is kind of like an 80's ballad of sorts, and kind of makes me think of the band The Darkness whom they toured with. "Freedom" has a Queen like solo, and some good guitar playing. Finally I really enjoyed "The Streets" it's and uplifting song, and it does have the feeling of older artists like Al Green, or War. Overall the album is interesting, and has it's ups and downs. More downs than I would have preferred as this is one of the few band's I've been enjoying from this generation, as we don't have many artist's that fill that void my classic rock heart desires. I will say there is some good guitar playing on this album with interesting solo's and the trumpet and piano also helps make these guys stand out. But a lot of it is just not where I would like it to be. If this album were lost or stolen, I'd not worry because it was an $8 digital download and if I had only a physical copy I'd probably just download what I enjoyed because the rest left me unsatisfied. Overall I give it a 7 because it wasn't "The Flamingo Trigger" again, and did have some tracks I enjoyed and I could feel some progression in their playing which could mean the next album will be amazing. // 7

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overall: 8
The Church Of Rock And Roll Reviewed by: Paul*Stanley, on february 07, 2012
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Sound: Foxy's done it again. "The Church of Rock and Roll" is a great follow-up to Foxy Shazam's self-titled record from two years ago. They decided to keep things interesting by moving away a bit from their anthemic pop sound they were crafting pretty well, and they did it in the best way I can think of. Drawing on obvious 1970s rock influences, they made the guitars louder, the production dirtier and are effectively preaching the gospel of how to rock and roll. The album's opener, "The Church of Rock and Roll" is a rowdy opener that really kills and lets you know that Foxy won't be as upbeat and poppy as their last album was. "I Like It," the album's first single, comes next and kicks it up another notch. If you thought it couldn't get any better, then the third song they hit you with is "Holy Touch," which is reminiscent of their 2010 album and will have you singing for days. "Last Chance at Love" sounds like they ripped it right out of Joan Jett or Pat Benetar's catalog. Overall, the album's a little frontloaded, but tracks 8 and 9, "Wasted Feelings" and "The Temple," respectively, are worth it to keep listening. The songs in between those already mentioned are a little more obscure and are the low points on the album, but even when Foxy isn't great, Foxy's still pretty good. // 8

Lyrics: I'm just going to go ahead and say that Eric Nally is the greatest rock and roll singer since the 80s. Album after album, he's proved his talent as a frontman and lyricist. His signature tounge-in-cheek lyrical style is preserved from the group's 2010 album. You're guaranteed a chuckle the first time you listen to what it is he likes in "I Like It". Sometimes, like in "Forever Together" and the bridge of "The Temple" it just seems like he's f--king with you. It's a little strange at times, but that seems to be his style, and I always end up respecting him for it, even if it's not mainstream. Like I said before, the album's production is a little dirtier, which works well with the aesthetic the band was going for with this disc, but if you were hoping for more of Eric being in the spotlight with his soaring vocals, it does him a little bit of a disservice. He still sounds great, but his voice doesn't quite shine as much. // 8

Overall Impression: I'm not sure "The Church Of Rock And Roll" is better than "Foxy Shazam", but it's definitely another great entry into this band's discography. If you're a fan of big riffs and a don't-give-a-damn attitude, Foxy is for you. They're an acquired taste for sure, but go down smooth as soon as you get over the initial "WTF" that is Foxy Shazam. Foxy Shazam continues to blow everyone else off the stage, being the best live act around and one of the most interesting groups in rock. Even though a couple of obscure songs weigh down the later end of this album, they punctuate heart-pounding, ass-kicking rock anthems. They refuse to be boring or get pigeonholed into one genre. I already can't wait to see what they serve up next. // 8

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overall: 9.3
The Church Of Rock And Roll Reviewed by: unregistered, on march 07, 2012
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Sound: Foxy Shazam is a bombastic, unpredictable, and unrelenting group of individuals who never cease to surprise their ever increasing fan base. On the surface there is a fleeting presence of the unpredictability that die hard Foxy fans cherish, as with each album they shuffle further into a more accessible sound. Beyond this, Foxy's element of surprise remains by transcending genres and proving that there is no type of music they can't knock out of the park. They have proven with "The Church Of Rock And Roll" that the raw, passionate sound of the 70's is not out of their reach. This album is dynamic and captures elements of multiple classic genres from the jazzy and soulful to gritty classic rock. This album highlights three members in particular: Loren (Guitars), Aaron (Drums), and Eric (Vocals). Loren's presence in this album make up for all other albums by putting the spotlight on his beautiful, but sometimes hilarious (See "Too Late Baby") guitar solos. His tone is the best I have heard on any rock album in a long time. You can hear the gritty, yet somehow smooth tone you can only find in a London concert hall. Aaron has both confused and amazed me with the drumming on this album. His style for "The Church Of Rock And Roll" truly captures the essence of "less is more". When I first listened to the album all the way through, I was disappointed in his lack of flamboyant fills or dynamic use of cymbals and other beats. It wasn't until I really payed attention to his style that I appreciated the simplicity, because his drumming just about defines the overall feel of the album. He chooses to accent Sky's keyboard parts and groove with Daisy's bass line to bring through the primary emotion of each song. // 9

Lyrics: I will start by saying that Eric Nally is my favorite frontman of all time. I don't think I'm being biased when I say that he has the best range and power of any vocalist from his generation. His evolution from "The Flamingo Trigger" to "The Church Of Rock And Roll" is nothing short of graceful and amazing. I almost feel that the psychotic babbling and screaming from "The Flamingo Trigger" days have given him the incredible voice he has today. Needless to say, the lyrics of this album perfectly embody the 70's rock and roll sound Foxy was trying to achieve, but Nally has found a way to make the vocals quite unique. The lyrics involve patterns of young love and the roots of rock and roll with quirky and funny parts peppered throughout the album. My favorite examples include the Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde quip in "Forever Together", the voice cracks at the end of the chorus in "The Streets", and the super high screeches in both "The Streets" and "Holy Touch". Eric has once again shown that he is the most dynamic and talented singer in the music scene today. I cannot wait to hear what borders he breaches next. // 9

Overall Impression: My overall impression of this album is welcoming of the new sound and hopeful for the future of Foxy Shazam. The upbeat, energetic songs make me want to dance and sing along over and over again. The seemingly "low" points of the album add character and dynamics to the overall feel of "The Church Of Rock And Roll". I listened to "Introducing" (my favorite album of theirs) after my 4th or 5th listen of the new one, and I was not disappointed in the juxtaposition. Foxy Shazam has made a graceful and positive change in their sound that will both attract new listeners and keep old fans at the edge of their seats. I am proud of these guys and cannot wait until their next release. // 10

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