Rarely is bedroom pop played with such hyperactive abandon.
Foxygen, the duo of Sam France and Jonathan Rado, present a debut album that never sits still, careening wildly, even within individual songs, across a wide range of pop, rock and avant-garde influences. Imagine a way more off-kilter version of the band fun.
But despite that continually buzzing kineticism, there's a strong foundation of pop hooks, doled out generously throughout the 36-minute Take the Kids Off Broadway.
"Abandon My Toys" is a curious title for the lead song on an album made by a pair of 22-year-olds tinkering around with bedroom pop. But it leads off the album with a wink, introducing the thrilling spontaneity that runs through the album.
The title song plays out like some psychedelic doo-wop number, with the romanticized adolescence of past generations distilled through the technological lens of the 2010s.
"Teenage Alien Blues," a 10-minute burst of musical collage in the middle, sums up the album's strengths as well as flaws. It's an experimental blend of psych-rock and Motown, groovily spaced out. It's ambitious and loaded with tantalizing hooks, but flirts dangerously with meandering busyness.
Take the Kids Off Broadway is a fun debut, full of promise. While bedroom-pop music tends to be airy and meticulously crafted, Foxygen blow the doors off that notion, indulging and combining retro impulses and experimental whims in quick order.