FOX JAWS at the Rivoli (332 Queen West), Friday (June 13), midnight. $12, free w/NXNE wristband (see page 62). 416-596-1908. Rating: NNNNN
With so many records hitting iPods and stores every year, we’re bound to miss at least one great release. Last year, Barrie’s Fox Jaws put out their fantastic debut to relatively little fanfare, which is really a shame because this foursome is on a par with any great Toronto indie act. Their debut, Goodbye Doris (a reference to the group’s first moniker, Doris Day), is an eclectic collection of frantic power chords, distorted vocals and thoughtful, complex song arrangements.
The record kicks off with the classic rock-meets-Feist-sounding Karmonica. With its rollicking drums, powerful harmonica and Carleigh Aikins’s passionate wails, this track is easily one of the better Canadian songs of the last 12 months. The gritty Golden Dogs-like blasts on Hide & Seek and the reverb-heavy shoegazing on Forging A Truce aren’t too shabby either.
Expect Fox Jaws to deliver a high-energy NXNE set, complete with violin bowing, xylophone hitting and manic tambourine playing. You might not have heard of these guys until now, but it won’t be long before they’re Ontario’s next big export.