Foxygen’s new track “America” is a five-minute rock symphony. With orchestral instrumentation, the song weaves its way through an abridged timeline of American music genres, from big band to classical movie soundtracks.
But don’t mistake it as a celebration of America’s musical accomplishments over time. Instead, Foxygen seem to be implying that America’s a disaster, in a timeless sort of way.
Instability permeates the song from the start. Sinister chromatic string lines are immediately juxtaposed with blissful It’s A Wonderful Life-meets-Disney instrumentals while Sam France croons, “Merry Christmas.” Before long we’re getting ruthless lyrics like this:
If you’re already there, then you’re already dead
If you’re living in America, whoa
Our heroes aren’t brave, they just got nothin’ to lose
Because they’re all living in America, whoa
Yeah, they went there.
“America” is impressive. Despite the fact that it hops through genres like a spastic time machine, it maintains cohesion. This may satisfy fans who disliked the disorderliness of the band’s last album, 2014’s ...And Star Power.
Is a new Foxygen LP on the way? This is the first new music we’ve gotten from them since ...And Star Power. We shall see. Listen to “America” below.