[Review] Temp’rall Sho’gazing – /fyoog/

With a title like Temp’rall Sho’gazing, one might believe that New Orleans-based /fyoog/ will share their take on Slouvaki or something of the like on their latest release. In reality, the record is more of an experimental approach to classic jazz, though there are certainly shoegaze elements incorporated throughout the album. Funky, audacious, and fresh, /fyoog/’s release in a unique approach to music steeped in tradition as well as a genre that has traditionally promoted progress.

Much like the musical movement that the name of the group is dubbed after, Temp’rall Sho’gazing demands control of the listener, guiding them through troubled waters (musically speaking) and the themes of darkness and uncertainty. The band’s interpretation of “Black Is The Color Of My True Love’s Hair” is not one that is gloomy, but is certainly one that has more color and expression to it – a modernist’s approach to a jazz standard. Similarly, the inclusion of “Sometimes I Feel Like A Motherless Child” captures an essence of the now-standard not regularly heard – the lamentation of the destitute yet forward-thinking individual, a contemporary cry of modern America.

/fyoog/ vocalist Katarina Boudreaux does an excellent job channeling Carole King had King worked within the realm of bayou jams. Keyboardist and multi-instrumentalist Sam Tepper trips the life fantastic throughout Temp’rall, delivering music that is punctual and zeitgeist appropriate. Together, the two ensure that /fyoog/ crawls the vortexes of time and space, space and feeling, and feeling and bravado. The record, as a result, is something out of Rotary Connection’s catalog; an earnest reimagining of beloved songs that are, for all intents and purposes, a trip.

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