Fang Island

Video: Fang Island’s Major teaser

This just in: high-fivin’ five-piece Fang Island is returning on July 24 with Major, a sophomore album that promises more infectious riffs and three-part harmonies. Here’s a 30-second taste of “Kindergarten,” the album’s piano-based intro, which seems to be a sign of greater hooks to come. Look for the album this summer from Sargent House.

50 Unheralded Albums from 2011

50 Unheralded Albums from 2011

In just one more trip around the sun, another swarm of immensely talented but under-recognized musicians has harnessed its collective talents and discharged its creations into the void. This list is but one fraction of those dedicated individuals who caught our ears with some serious jams.

Morrow vs. Hajduch

Morrow vs. Hajduch: Noxious Foxes’ Légs

Scott Morrow is ALARM’s music editor. Patrick Hajduch is a very important lawyer. Each week they debate the merits of a different album.

Noxious Foxes: LégsNoxious Foxes: Légs 2xLP (Broth IRA, 7/26/11)

Noxious Foxes: “Doth Shalt Noth”

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Morrow: In the vein of Hella and other masterful duos that overachieve with layered loops and hot licks, Noxious Foxes is a pair of like-minded guitar/drums artists. The music, though technical, is rooted more in melody and groove than Hella — somewhere closer to Spencer Seim spinoffs The Advantage or sBACH if you were to further force the comparison.

Guitarist Justin Talbott pulls double duty with synths and electric pianos over the guitar loops, adding a tinge of the Blood Brothers aesthetic to the mix. (There isn’t a pair of sassy-as-fuck vocalists, however.) And the occasionally 8-bit-esque synths add to the video-game vibe that the guitars give off, making the Advantage comparison more apt, even if there are no Contra covers.

Fang Island

Guest Spots: Fang Island on Teenar, Girl Guitar

Fang Island - s/tFang Island: s/t (Sargent House, 2/23/10)

Fang Island: “Sideswiper”

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Fang Island, with its three-guitar attack and lightning-fast riffs, knows a few things about shredding. Logic dictates that it also knows a fair amount about guitars. For guitarist Nicholas Sadler, there’s one axe in particular that stands out: a weirdly human girl-guitar of mysterious origins. In this piece penned for ALARM, Sadler laments the fact that he didn’t conceive of the musical mannequin first and goes on to explain what exactly makes Teenar so magical.

I Wish I Had Thought of This First: Teenar, Girl Guitar
By Nick Andrew Sadler

Teenar, Girl Guitar

My name is Nick Sadler, and though I hate guitar players, I love guitars. This one is a work of mad genius. Here is Teenar, my dream guitar, at what could be a middle-school, father-daughter dance with her pervert-savant creator / daddy,  “Sunset” Lou Reimuller. I am absolutely enamored with Teenar, and I really wish that I had thought of this first.

Teenar is totally baller, outfitted from head to toe in vintage clothing, without arms, ahead of her time with a set of fiery Beavis-legs, and sporting a smart, belly-thru-body guitar that peeks out from behind her bodacious, above-the-knee, low-cut denim skirt. Cute! Teenar, Girl Guitar also has 21 frets on a beautiful blond neck that has been carefully integrated into her never-developing torso, two skin-colored, single-coil pickups that straddle her rock-hard bellybutton, and a fleshy six-string, yummy-tummy bridge, just like the one that my big sis got when she moved out of the house and began dating [Mikey] “Bug” [Cox] from Coal Chamber.

100 Unheralded Albums from 2010

Among the thousands of under-appreciated or under-publicized albums that were released in 2010, hundreds became our favorites and were presented in ALARM and on Of those, we pared down to 100 outstanding releases, leaving no genre unexplored in our list of this year’s overlooked gems.

Fang Island

Concert Photos: Fang Island @ Lincoln Hall

Fang Island released its self-titled debut album in early 2010 on Sargent House. The Brooklyn riff masters have been touring on the strength of that record, and they recently made a stop at Lincoln Hall in Chicago for a raucous set of shredding and sweating. ALARM contributing photographer Elizabeth Gilmore was there to document the show.

Fang Island

Contest: Win tickets to Champaign-Urbana’s Pygmalion Music Festival

Held in Champaign-Urbana, IL (the home of the University of Illinois), the Pygmalion Music Festival 2010 will take place September 22-25, showcasing rock stalwarts like Built to Spill alongside up-and-coming acts like Janelle Monae.

There are loads of big-name performers, including Fang Island, Cut Chemist, Holy Fuck, Of Montreal, Roky Erickson & Okkervil River, Caribou, Cap’n Jazz, Ted Leo, Emeralds, and Owen. That list hardly scratches the surface, though. To see the full schedule, click here.