Foxygen's new record, ...And Star Power, dropped recently on Jagjaguwar and it's a monster of a double album. It's almost too much. But if things get briefly off the rails at least these cats are ambitious.
And in these bleak days, sometimes ambition is enough.
This record is sort of a concept album but I am not quite sure if that matters. ...And Star Power succeeds in large part because these guys throw a lot of things together. "Cosmic Vibrations" mixes trippy noise rock with nods in the direction of space-y stuff like Yes.
And yet there's direct and tuneful stuff here that isn't quite so out there. "Mattress Warehouse" is catchy and gentle. "Cannibal Holocaust" -- named after the film? -- is similarly lyrical but then something like "Cold Winter/Freedom" arrives and things descend into the maelstrom again -- all fuzzy feedback bursts and warped vocals.
"Can't Contextualize My Mind" is early Neil Young-inspired strummy folk rock while "Brooklyn Police Station" is like the more psychedelic bits of the Stones when Brian Jones was alive.
"Everybody Needs Love" is a singalong jam that charms and warms the heart while other bits on the double-record bludgeon the eardrums.
If ...And Star Power is not a complete masterpiece at least it is shooting for the stars. I applaud Foxygen for trying music this big and when they succeed, things are delightful and glorious.