Last Of Many by The Foxes Review

‘Last of Many’ is the début album from London’s own The Foxes, I can only say what a glorious delight it really is. Full of illustrious melodies and witty lyricism, its full of great examples of what eminent song writing is all about.

First thing that strikes me about ‘Last of Many’ is how effortless it sounds. A free-flowing form of expression that lead singer Nigel captures wonderfully at times. Take opening track ‘Suzy’, equal amounts of riotous behaviour and sentimental cheekiness. Groovy bass and guitar work and with a huge sublime but pounding chorus. ‘Run’ showcase’s Nigel’s rather dashing falsetto and carefully thought out songwriting technique. With its change of tempo and structure going from Beatles-esque to 50′s Rockabilly in under two minutes, its something that should be applauded.

A personal favourite being ‘Sweet Little Wonder’, a beautiful ode to someone very close to the songwriter’s heart. Sentimental, touching and with charming harmonies, many a heart will swoon upon listening to it. ‘Get Me’ is fast and frenetic and has a not so annoying but catchy ‘da da da da’ moment. Hook after hook, The Foxes just demonstrate bright and infectious composition like no other. ‘Country Low’ was one of the first songs to be taken from this album and put out there to their willing public. It accompanies a very classic looking video game tribute music video, which you will get to see in a bit just down at the bottom.

Now one of my favourites has to be ‘Sad Thing’. It starts off slow, just Nigel and an acoustic guitar and it gradually builds along nicely upon a ringing chord sequence. Then POW comes this huge chorus that sends shivers down your spine as it kicks in, amazing. They finish with ‘Sorry To Leave You’ which again has those great sounding harmonies and slender guitar picking hooks. With echoes of Futureheads and Divine Comedy, a sweet little finish to what is an accomplishment of a début.

‘Last Of Many’ is an album of love, loss and life and in its core is full of careful storytelling and audacious banter. Every time you will hear this album, it will, as The Beatles once sang, “guaranteed to raise a smile”. A joyous triumphant and a lesson in classic pop songwriting.

The Foxes – Last of Many [Album]

The British Indie scene is booming, so much so that it’s difficult to find something really fresh in the genre. London based The Foxes’ first studio album Last of Many has the crucial edge needed for an indie band to stand out. Their sound is sometimes cheesy, other times classic rock ‘n’ roll, with obvious influences from The Beatles, The Kinks and Queen. While the lyrics aren’t exactly top notch, the band make up for it in other ways. The clear and simple vocals suggest unsophisticated, mild-mannered music, but The Foxes keep the album interesting with surprisingly complex tracks that provide fluidity while still seeming effortless. Vibrant harmonies weave between striking rock n roll guitar that creates a radio-friendly retro sound.

Last of Many was produced by John Cornfield, who has previously worked with the likes of Muse, Razorlight, Supergrass and Oasis. The band formed in 2006 when Nigel Thomas (vocals, rhythm guitar) and Alex Douglas (bass, backing vocals) formed an acoustic duo. Later joined by Jonathan Bretman (lead guitar) and Stephen Wilde (drums), the boys left the security of their jobs and toured the US and the UK. They have released two EPs, Love, Killer in 2007 and Depression, Joy and a Moment of Fame last year.

The first few tracks are bursting with life, particularly opener ‘Suzy’ with its killer riff, and super catchy ‘There’s something about you’ with its sweet, high vocals and delicate guitar. ‘Run’ is great at keeping the interest with surprising twists and turns throughout. ‘Sweet Little Wonder’ is deliciously twee, but the vocals in the verses make the song sound like something from a cheesy children’s telly programme. ‘Too Little Too Late’ has a similar problem, with the verses making it seem like a Broadway Theater production.
As the album progresses it loses focus, with the tracks blurring into each other as it all gets a bit samey. ‘The Sad Thing’ saves it with it’s western style guitars, the track swinging between a sad ballad to a punchy grunge song. The last thing you expect is for it burst into attitude half way through and slip into a rocking guitar solo. This ability to surprise the listener while still churning out easy on the ear tunes is what really shines throughout the album. Yes, there are some bland tracks (avoid the repetitive ‘Out of Service’) but for a first effort this album has some real corkers on it. Be sure to listen out for more from The Foxes in the near future. Last of Many is released on 5th December, so add it to your Christmas list.

The Foxes EP Album Review

This week saw the release of brand new EP from the Foxes ‘Depression, Joy and A Moment of Fame.’ Released on June 28th 2010 through Room 10 Records the EP is set to dazzle both fans and critics.

The Foxes might have been sleeping on friends’ floors and in their battered old van for the past two years but their brand new ‘Depression, Joy and A Moment of Fame’ EP belies their homelessness. Having given up everything to get fully behind the band, they started their own label, Room 10 Records, and have been touring the UK, the US and Europe ever since.

Producer John Cornfield (Muse, Razorlight, Supergrass, Oasis) invited them to record their first full length album with him at the isolated Sawmills Studios in Cornwall, where the last part of the journey has to be completed by boat.

The four songs on ‘Depression, Joy and A Moment of Fame’ represent a taster of what is to come later in the year from The Foxes, originally hailing from Birmingham, Brighton and Leamington Spa but now settled, often uncomfortably, on a variety of floors in London.

Although gaining support from Radio One (Zane), Radio Two (Long, Lester) and Absolute, the edgy sound of their previous three UK singles (‘Trauma Town’, ‘Bill Hicks’ and ‘Lover, Killer’) has developed into a warmer, richer sound with the addition of acoustic guitars, piano, and harmonies from all three singers.

The Foxes follow up their extensive tour of April, May and June with the following dates throughout July and September, hitting the road with what The Red Stripe Music Awards described as “an awesome set

Depression, Joy and a Moment of Fame

The Foxes’ ‘Depression, Joy and a Moment of Fame’ EP brings the sunshine with three light, summery indie-pop songs, before finally capturing your full attention with the unusual, subtly humorous ‘Country Low.’

The most memorable of the three upbeat summer-songs, is the beautifully hazy ‘Something About You.’ The blurry-eyed guitar-work is complimented by the occasional starburst of acoustic strumming and melt-in-the-mouth, lilting vocals. ‘Something About You’ tumbles to a gorgeous finale, where The Foxes layer on additional guitar lines in a lush swirl of sun-kissed sound. ‘Get Me’ is a livelier take on that feel good vibe. This is the sort of silly, but charismatic, indie-pop that comes with plenty of hand-claps and “bah-dah-dah-dah!” backing vocals. It’s a simple but effective song, but it does miss a trick, with a chorus that falls slightly flat and fails to completely seal the deal.

‘No Reply’ crams in far too many disorientating changes of mood and pace, making this one of those songs that feels too much like hard work. It does stumble into one standout moment, as The Foxes jam together some shambolic chord-plucking and lashings of those perfectly harmonised backing vocals The Foxes do so well. It’s a quirky combination, made even edgier by the combination of Nigel Thomas ‘s rich, soulful crooning and charmingly everyday lyrics (“there’s no reply from you today / but anyway / I guess there won’t be now I told you to get lost.”) Unfortunately, this ingeniously odd combo is all but lost in ‘No Reply’s many twists and turns.

This brings us to ‘Country Low,’ which might just be the most unsettling song ever written about “going for a walk in the country.” The creeping bass, tribal drumbeats and eerie, shivery guitar set the stage for some dark vocal performances: those harmonised backing vocals have a ghostly, hollow quality to them and Thomas occasionally dips his voice to a spine-tingling drone. As with ‘Get Me,’ The Foxes do seem to run out of ideas when they get to the chorus, but this EP is worth purchasing just to hear Thomas gravely intoning “in the country,” against a backdrop of skin-crawling bass. A uniquely black-hearted tale of going for a walk in the country.

‘Depression, Joy and a Moment of Fame’ is an indie-pop EP with plenty of character. ‘No Reply,’ ‘Get Me’ and ‘Something About You’ are breezy, summery fun and an enjoyable listen, but with ‘Country Low’ The Foxes pique your interest, and will have you keeping an eye out for future releases.