In the musical landscape that I find myself saturated in it is obvious that pop music is not what it used to be. That is not to say that it is not enjoyable in its own way, it just starts to all sound a little too similar after a while. That can be said about music at almost any point in time, but somehow it feels especially true today. When I stumbled upon Fitzsimon and Brogan (FaB),it was the breath of fresh air that I did not know I needed.
Fitzsimon and Brogan (FaB) is composed of Neil Fitzsimon and Bee Brogan. They are a UK based band and both members were previously members of the since disbanded Pretty Blue Gun, with which they released two critically acclaimed albums. I was pleased to find they have 3 previous albums as FaB. Their newest album, “This Wicked Pantomime,” is my favorite at the moment (though that might change, as each album is brilliant in its own ways.) The music itself is very bright and is pop to the core. Bee has a strong sense of melody in her vocals and reminds me of Debbie Harry if Debbie Harry had a mix of German Singer/Songwriter Nico’s tone. All the songs are written by Neil and he is also the band’s guitarist. Bee sings lead, plays the keyboard and drums, and engineers. Ever since my childhood obsession with The Beatles and The White Stripes, I have grown to find deeper enjoyment in music that comes from a completely self-sufficient group. The authenticity that comes with self-sufficiency really shines through with this band. Woody Woodmancey, the drummer for David Bowie and The Spiders from Mars, adds an unmistakable touch to the album’s sound and pace. One of my favorite tracks (which was hard to narrow down) is the ominously upbeat “Elsie’s Last Stand.” The music in this track conjures up images of a carnival on fire. One of my other favorites is “A Bullet for Cinderella.” It is Bee’s vocals that won me on this track. Her lower register that she utilizes in the song’s verses is addicting. I think her lower, darker tones are where she shines the brightest. “Ghost at the Feast” really stood out to<br>me as well. Neil’s guitar work makes this song a constant repeat for me. As a side note, one thing that I guess would be considered a minor detail that always makes me appreciate an album more fully are creative titles. With each album, FaB maintains the same creative stamina when it comes to naming songs. “The Tears of Scarlet Murder” and “Pretty Blue Gun” win the prizes for best song titles on this album as far as I am concerned. The songs themselves are brilliant both sonically and lyrically as well.
With Fitzsimon and Brogan’s “This Wicked Pantomime,” they have produced the perfect soundtrack for summer. The kind of summer where The Beatles are blasting on the radio and Bowie is performing at the Hammersmith Odeon later that night. Where the party has just started, and the night never ends. I look forward to listening to this album on repeat and cannot wait to see what this phenomenal band puts out next.
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