Foxygen, The Lexington, London

3.00

 

“You’re acting like you’re in the eighth grade,” snaps singer Sam France to guitarist and keyboardist Jonathan Rado in a pause between songs. “Yeah? Well you’re acting like you’re in the seventh grade,” retorts his bandmate.

Far from being an actual onstage squabble, they’re just goofing around. And this band sure likes to goof around. What else would you expect from a duo who named themselves Foxygen (a teenage joke that stuck) and called their acclaimed new album something as ridiculous as We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic? This sort of silliness is to be expected. 

Foxygen have been vocal about their intention to inject some fun into the current music scene. In a recent interview with Pitchfork, the 22-year-olds from California spoke out against bands that stand on stage “staring at their fucking pedals”. “I don't see any personality…I want to hear somebody raise their voice or do something wacky,” insisted France.

So here they are. And they are certainly delivering. Jokes, dumb dancing; it’s all there. But the incessant clowning shouldn’t deter from the fact that they are serious about making music. And they are very good at it. With a love of all things sixties and seventies, their ambitious recent album might be clearly influenced by bands such as the Stones, the Doors and the Velvets, but they have managed to twist some of the classic psychedelic sounds of that era in unpredictable and bizarre ways to create something that is more than the sum of their record collections.

Joined onstage by three touring members, there are some great moments in their set. “Shuggie” and recent single “San Francisco” sound good, but then those are two of their more straightforward tracks. At other times it’s chaos. Their terrific, meandering single from last year, “Make It Known”, is shambolic; like a bunch of university students performing it at karaoke after a few too many snakebites. Sure, it’s kind of entertaining, but it’s also a mess.

Much of the crowd don’t seem to mind too much. You only need to see all of the beaming smiles in the audience to realise the band has won them over. But if they can somehow maintain the streaks of idiocy and unruliness while delivering a tighter set that do the songs justice, then they might just be on to a winner.

Suggested Topics
Arts and Entertainment

game of thrones reviewWarning: spoilers

Arts and Entertainment
The original Star Wars trio of Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill

George Osborne confirms Star Wars 8 will film at Pinewood Studios in time for 4 May

film

Arts and Entertainment
Haunted looks: Matthew Macfadyen and Timothy Spall star in ‘The Enfield Haunting’

North London meets The Exorcist in eerie suburban drama

TV

Arts and Entertainment

Filming to begin on two new series due to be aired on Dave from next year

TV

Arts and Entertainment
Kit Harington plays MI5 agent Will Holloway in Spooks: The Greater Good

'You can't count on anyone making it out alive'film
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

    Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

    Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

    Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
    China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

    China's influence on fashion

    At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
    Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

    The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

    Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
    Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

    Rainbow shades

    It's all bright on the night
    'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

    Bread from heaven

    Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
    Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

    How 'the Axe' helped Labour

    UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
    Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

    The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

    A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
    'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

    Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

    Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

    The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
    Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

    Vince Cable exclusive interview

    Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
    Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

    Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

    Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
    Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

    It's time for my close-up

    Meet the man who films great whites for a living
    Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

    Homeless people keep mobile phones

    A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before