Pop Culture Press

The Foxymorons, David Dewese and Jerry James, live hundreds of miles away from each other and construct their music via tapes sent by mail and answering machines. These childhood friends have uncovered an amazing synergy, however. Rodeo City, the group’s second lp, is a stirring collection of bright, catchy indie rock that, at various times, recalls the lo-fi magic of early Pavement and Sebadoh, the unabashed power pop glory of Big Star, and the stark, guitar-strummy appeal of the Velvet Underground. A tall order, but the group succeeds where other would-be cultish lo-fiers have stumbled. In many of the tracks on Rodeo City (titled in tribute to both a Big Star album and the duo’s native Mesquite, Texas), there’s a sweet melodic hook that makes you catch your breath – like the way “Summer Bummer” bursts wide open two minutes in, with Dewese singing desperately against a wall of guitars; or the loud peal of guitar that bursts through the innocuous opening rhythm of “ready to go,” spurring James into the second verse. And then there’s “Baby Blue,” the most beautiful guitar-pop ditty you haven’t heard yet. Don’t let the goofy name fool you, these guys write formidable, sun-baked guitar pop, and this album is pure clotted cream. Highly recommended.