Saturday, January 4, 2014

Fitz And The Tantrums More Than Just A Dream Elektra 2013

From relative obscurity to global acceptance, Fitz and the Tantrums are everything good about what pop music used to be!
Brent Black /
Before 2008, this band couldn't get arrested and then ever so gradually they began to break from the pack with a sound long missing from popular music of today. Critics are quick to tag the band as "blue-eyed soul" which is an incredibly self limiting term at best. Comparisons can be made to Hall and Oates but they are inherently unfair. Fitz and the Tantrums are far more than pop music and More Than Just A Dream is far more than Picking Up The Pieces Part Two.
I hate pop music almost as much as I hate smooth jazz. There is an inherent soulful quality that runs consistently through the release but on a more British house flavor. Beats are hip-hop oriented while lyrically the band is as relatable to a young audience as they are potential baby boomers. Deceptively subtle diversity in presentation and development are now pushing a band that first broke big thanks to a national commercial to commercial mainstays in a pop field littered with lyrical causalities of dreams and promises left unfulfilled.
"Money Grabber" is of course the hit, simply because what is left of American radio has not come around to discovering other gems on the release such as "6 am" and "Out of My League." The band in a pop music ensemble is normally an after thought for a well placed front man. Here we find Motown historian and session ace John Wicks on drums. Along with Wicks, Jeremy Ruzumna ran keys for Macy Gray while bassist Ethan Phillips did time with De La Soul. Noelle Scaggs is the power house vocal counterpoint to front man Fitz...
Take a vocal showman like Fitz, a tighter than tight rhythm section and a new contemporary attitude and you have a collective that covers a great deal of melodic ground while keep the listener engaged every step of the way. A must from 2013!
Old school goes new cool and in the best possible way!
  1. Out Of My League        
  2. Break The Walls          
  3. The Walker          
  4. Spark          
  5. 6am        
  6. Fools Gold          
  7. Keepin Our Eyes Out           
  8. Last Raindrop          
  9. House On Fire          
10. The End        
11. Get Away        
12. Merry Go Round