Indy Rock Live is thrilled to present this guest review from Jeff Nordyke. You can find him on Twitter at
I have a confession to make: I haven’t been a fan of Foxy Shazam for very long. I’d heard the band name for a while, but seeing as The Church of Rock and Roll is their fourth album (and newest), I’m a little behind the game. It wasn’t until around last November that they actually attracted my ears. Spin Magazine put out a free online Nirvana tribute album called Nevermind: A Tribute Album. After coming across the Foxy Shazam song, I dedicated the next 30 minutes to finding everything I could by them.
If you’re familiar with these guys at all, you’d probably agree with me in assuming this concert was going to get kind of crazy. If only I was prepared for how crazy it was going to get.
Foxy Shazam started out the set asking everyone in the room for complete silence, as lead singer Erik Nally told a lovely story about how we were all going to leave there at the end of the night smelling like the inside of a pregnant woman, because we were all going to be reborn. Then they quickly broke into an amped-up version of the Church title track.
The show’s energy level swung wildly but was overall pretty unique. There were a lot of breaks in-between songs where Nally told fun, if not confusing and oddly detailed, stories. I really liked that they mixed in a lot of new songs with old ones. The 14-or-so song set included 6 off of the new album (although minus 2 points for not playing my favorite song), including I Like It, Forever Together, and an ass-kicking version of Freedom that had people in the crowd screaming “Merica” at the end (gotta love college crowds). One of the crazier moments came toward the end of the show when the piano player jumped on top of the crowd WITH his keyboard and played almost an entire song while being held up by the audience. Talk about trust…and skill.
After all the intensity, great music, cheesy 80’s rock antics, and lots of on stage humping (including Nally jumping on the shoulders of guitarist Loren Turner in the middle of a thrashing solo), the most unexpected thing happened at the end of the night. They ended the main set after a wild, dark, and lengthened version of their song The Temple, leaving the crowd pumped up and cheering louder than they had all night — and that’s saying a lot considering the crowd was very vocal about their appreciation of the band. I don’t think a single person in the place excepted what happened next . . . the house lights came up and the show was over. No encore. This is the first time I’ve ever known a band at this level to not play an encore. Especially when the crowd is chanting for one. Granted the crowd was kinda light, 200 or so, but it made for a strange and slightly jarring end to the show.
Fresh off their house band gig at Spike TV’s Guy’s Choice Awards, the turn out was a little less than I expected. But that didn’t dim the energy of the room. Deluxe at Old National Centre was the perfect venue for this show: dark, underground, and perfectly sized. I have a feeling Foxy Shazam is going to keep rising in their popularity and is destine for bigger Indy venues in the future….let’s just hope they figure out an encore set.
Were you there? What did you think of the show?