string(5) "index" FATEA - Home dsffg


The Boxcar BoysThe Boxcar Boys
Album: Cicada Ball
Label: Self Released
Tracks: 14

I recently went to the USA for the musical trip of a lifetime, one stop during said trip included four days in New Orleans. If one arrives in the Crescent City with little or no knowledge of Jazz, be warned - you'll certainly be left feeling uplifted by their own brand of giddy and downright goofy Jazz stylings. The same could be said for Canadian instrumentalists, The Boxcar Boy's third studio release - Cicada Ball.

The premise behind this album is that the Cicadas (a kind of large American tree cricket) have taken a break from chirping on those sticky summer evenings, and decided to throw a party. I'm not sure I can think of a better way to describe the music on this album - it's everything you'd expect from a bunch of jolly little insects! If anyone out there's been to the legendary jazz venue: Preservation Hall in New Orleans, you'll understand how the Boxcar Boys would fit right in there once listening to Cicada Ball.

The Boxcar Boys have a way of crossing musical genres thanks to the host of talent available to the members (not all of whom are boys I might add…). I loved "Wally on The Run" which presents an Appalachian-infused melody, including a jaw harp - very rock and roll. The jazzy joyfulness that runs through the album is broken up by such tracks that transcend genres such as the solemn old time gospel-sounding "Hymn For George".

Time to draw a parallel with Star Wars and hopefully not offend anyone in the process… The opening few seconds of "That's a Plenty" really sounds like that Cantina Band song from Star Wars Episode IV: A new Hope! Sorry guys and girls if that's a little rude of me! As well as alluding to Star Wars, there are is a mix of traditionals and originals on Cicada Ball including the provocative "Take your Fingers Off It" - quite what they're putting their fingers on we'll never really know, but it makes for great listening fun!

Honestly I wouldn't ever claim to know an awful lot about jazz music. In fact it's the genre I'm lacking in knowledge the most. That said Cicada Ball is a fantastic and hearty release boasting some wonderful musical prowess bordering on virtuosity. Clarinet, accordion, trombone - everything you'd expect to hear on a New Orleans-style jazz album; then add a banjo, harmonica and the odd string of smokey Armstrong-esque vocals and you've got a rich cauldron of melodic soup going on here.

I'm gonna keep this one short and sweet as I don't want to further offend any Jazzos out there. The Boxcar Boys have really laid on a feast of song and dance in Cicada Ball, showcasing an opulent style of music which spans the spaces between Europe and the USA.

Lloyd Brown

Previous Next
The Bully Wee Band: Like The Snow Matthew The Oxx: Haul It Up

Recent Reviews

Baby Don't Tear My Clothes

Fatea Showcase Sessions

The Fatea Showcase Sessions are a series of downloads featuring acts that we've really enjoyed and think that more people should get the chance to hear.
Click Here to get the latest session

Visit The FATEA Archive!