FOXY SHAZAM REVIEW! They support The Lost Prophets @ Shepherd’s Bush EMpire

8 Sep

Words by Rahsian Parris / Photography by Carmen Chan

The house lights have gone off and there is immediately a roar of cheers and clapping. This crowd seem extremely pleased to see FOXY SHAZAM, albeit mostly because they have been waiting a while for the nights entertainment to kick off. I have never seen them play live before and neither have most of the crowd judging from their quietly bemused states when the music starts, but never the less anxious faces and aching feet aside, everyone in the house is delighted.

Foxy Shazam seem to be an eclectic mix of glam rock that bursts into bubbly pop rock somewhere in between the animated piano playing and the vocals that seem surrounded by bedlam, however, I cannot help but like it. A few songs in and Nally’s energetic performance has not waned even slightly, he dances with the mic stand testing the flexibility of his skin-tight black skinny jeans and breaks a sweat in a three quarter-length leather biker jacket (with a mini basketball as a shoulder embellishment) and then proceeds to drag the mic across the floor behind him as he prances around the stage; is it his puppy? His sheep? We will never know.

He likes talking in between songs, a trait the crowd are beginning to appreciate less and less and the more he jokes the more agitated the crowd of predominantly youths seem to get, however, there is a girl in the front row sporting a huge blond Mohawk, she seems to be the only one that is loving every minute. All of a sudden slight dismay turns into what feels like an actual fight. I start to feel like I am in the middle of a lovers tiff when three songs in Nally stops and says, “someone has just flipped me off, who was it? Was it you?” he points into the crowd at a guy in the middle of the standing crowd and proceeds to have an unnecessarily long rant about whether or not this is the man that stuck his middle finger up at him.

He proceeds to horrify everyone by joking (I hope) that he does not take likely to having people flip him off and would love to take the man outside, grab him tight by his hair and smash his head into the pavement until he bleeds to death, I can see the security at the side of the stage shaking their heads, visibly perturbed, even more so when Nally spits on stage and then blows aggressive, spitty, raspberries at the crowd who shriek in horror as saliva comes flying their way.

Eric Nally has the stage presence of publicly fighting lovers; you watch in disgust at such a public display of disrespect, this transforms into pity as you cringe when you see a crowd gathering, then feel anger as you take sides and all of a sudden you are being entertained and cannot tear your eyes away from the scene. The audience are exasperated by Nally’s torturous jokes in between songs, they are not funny, but the crowds reaction is. The cheers have mutated into boos, although a good number of people in the audience are staying cheery natured and whooping at every given opportunity.

There is a quiet spot as the band get ready to storm into another song and someone shouts out “I facebooked your mum”. The crowd might be underage the legal drinking age, but everybody recognises the connotation “you want to what? Facebook me?” he says “you want to facebook me? What’s that? You want to facebook my mum?” Nally sounds genuinely confused, as if to shrug off the insult he tells a story about smoking, asks for a lighter (that gets thrown at the guitarist with brutal force) and proceeds to light a cigarette on stage. Of course by this point all eyes are on the stage, a member of the house storms on demanding that he put out the cigarette (it must still be legal to smoke inside buildings in America) and in true Foxy Shazam style, he puts the cigarette out on his tongue and eats it. I am flabbergasted.

Two more rocky numbers and, like most people in the crowd, I am not really concentrating on the quality of the music, though it is quality, but trying to take in and fathom what I am seeing on stage. Surprisingly when the last number stomps into the finale, the boos have died down mostly (though some plastic cups have been thrown in the mean time, one of which hit a band member) but the crowd are cheering, some still seem a little taken aback, but something magical has happened, the screams and whoops are, this time, not with anticipation for the LostProphets or even just because the cringe worthy moments are over, but somewhere underneath the shock horror of it all, it was actually seriously entertaining.

The band take a bow and walk off stage and I cannot help but smile to myself, basketballs and skeleton leggins aside, they are not actually insane, nor are they homicidal maniacs, they are a very specific, extremely clever band with an eccentricity that baffles as much as it charms. The beauty is in the genius in that, whether you hate them or you love them, no matter how good the Lost Prophets show is after this performance, every one and their cousin is going to remember Foxy Shazam.

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