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The Fats – Rock & Roll Fantasy Review

This year, the rock & roll genre is becoming more and more rare. Many subsets of rock have gained popularity with the advent of music streaming and accessibility in recording equipment, but rock & roll hasn’t been nearly as lucky. This makes “Rock & Roll Fantasy” by The Fats an interesting outlier, a rock & roll record released in July that’s a love letter to bands of yesteryear.

Listening to “Rock & Roll Fantasy” is like taking a time machine back to the ’60s and early ’70s, in the best way. Although it serves as The Fats’ first official full-length album, the band showcases gravitas, charisma, and confidence through their playing. This is no surprise as each band member is a music industry veteran. Blending together various sounds, they manage to really capture the essence of the genre with this one.

Songs like “Dirty Shirley” and album opener “Hellhound” carry the exact same energy and playing you’d expect from old-school American rock music. Influences from legendary bands such as The Rolling Stones, The Who and Kiss can be heard all throughout the record. It’s mixed with their own specific sound and style, keeping things interestingly fresh while still harkening back to the old days.

Digging deeper, there are even some callbacks to legendary blues musicians, as can be seen from their covers “Big Boss Man” and “Walkin’ the Dog” by Jimmy Reed and Rufus Thomas. It’s a real treat to listen to, transforming these songs with a modern understanding of rock & roll sensibilities. What truly makes all of this work, of course, is the skill and showmanship of The Fats themselves.

The trio of James Chiha (vocals/guitars), Alex Kotsornithis (guitars), and Brandon Benwell (drums) do an absolutely phenomenal job translating this style of music into something fresh and new. Brandon’s drumming is key to the album’s sound, and Juicy guitar riffs are littered all over the album, especially in songs like the title track, “Rock N’ Roll Fantasy.” Meanwhile, “Best of You” has an absolutely insane bassline, one of the best we’ve heard as of late.

James’ vocals also do an intense amount of heavy lifting here. Early rock & roll bands relied heavily on the skill and character of their frontmen, and James inherits this spirit perfectly. His voice has just the right amount of grit to fit the bill while still retaining melodic pleasantness. It results in most songs here being generally enjoyable, even outside of the rock & roll hemisphere.

Overall, “Rock & Roll Fantasy” is simply a fantastic time throughout its entire runtime. It’s such a big love letter to the genre as a whole, where great talent meets incredible artistic vision and crisp modern production. For fans of rock & roll, this one is a must-listen. Absolutely phenomenal stuff from The Fats, we can’t wait to see what they’ve got in store next!

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About StanleyGatero (109 Articles)
I am Stanley Gatero, a music lover, digital marketer and PR specialist. I am regular contributor of Disrupt, 24hiphop, Redxmagazine, IndiePulse Music and LimitLess Mag. Reach out to me through

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