Phattfoxx: You’re Welcome – album review

Mixing DnB, EDM, reggae and ska Derby band Phattfoxx has released album You’re Welcome digitally and added to their already enviable live reputation with a solid and fun collection.

Having just played Glastonbudget Festival and newly streamlined as a four-piece Phattfoxx is gaining a reputation beyond Derby to match its one within the city. Live this is a band which draws a mixed crowd, reflecting the range of their sound and the influences feeding through. They are high energy, occasionally abrasive but always fun.

With plenty to go at here and with it at a dizzying speed it can take a few tracks to limber up, find your feet, and get comfortable with some full throttle electroclash. LightEmUp features the joint vocals of Marty Kelly, also behind the electronics, and former vocalist Lucia Murray, neither wasting time in kicking it in and weaving over each other and while this has a definite dance basis there are other genres subtly flickering through. The raw vocals take on an almost nu-metal force at times, the drums and guitar bringing in similar elements before the track returns firmly to EDM territory.

While the collection is cohesive, it’s never less than surprising. Here the full on EDM assault of LightEmUp is followed by the reggae and ska infused Jay-T. It shouldn’t work – too many flavours overwhelm the palette – but with Phattfoxx the variety is delicious, perfectly seasoning the DnB and EDM. These genres probably shouldn’t go together but on this record, masterfully and playfully mixed by this band, they just do.

Tracks get a little heavier as we head deeper into the second half of this mini album with Second Flux getting off to an industrially crunching start before the march of Hubris mixes that grinding and doom laden bottom line with more darting electro dancing around a strobing guitar riff. You can’t help but think that this is the music of a band who have grown up between a record collection and an 8-bit game – the fast-moving visual assault calmed by some serious stoner rock. Processed those two things don’t fight for attention but blend seamlessly.

Closer Stand Your Ground brings more of that ska and reggae influence in, a bouncing brass line and a softer vocal give way to chants and a faster beat but the influence and the vibe is clear.

This collection makes it clear why Phattfoxx have popped up on a wide range of gigs and are embraced by many of the factions within the Derby scene as their own. They’re cross-genre in the best possible way – music that comes from everywhere and belongs to all, whatever their taste. While they may be a confusing proposition on paper all becomes clear on listening – it may just be time for Phattfoxx to graduate to some bigger stages and take this vibe beyond the city limits.

You’re Welcome is available on Spotify now – listen here.

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