Call & Response: Foxfire
Forget what you think you know about this local indie band. Foxfire have recently changed their name, evolved (and continue to evolve) their funk/soul/disco rock sound, and now receive signals from space.
The seven-piece band do not have any new demos posted on their Myspace page yet but they do have an entertaining welcome message up, and they do have lots of new material in the works. They previewed a couple new songs for me and now I am really looking forward to seeing them live at the Horseshoe this Friday night.
I asked Neil, Joe and Love from Foxfire about their sound, romanticizing Toronto, and some kind of dick fight.
Keep reading for the complete interview.
blogTO: Why were originally called Foxfire Forest and why did you condense it to Foxfire?
Neil, Joe and Love: Foxfire is the term for the bioluminescence created in the right conditions by a few species of fungi that decay wood. We like the combination of the organic and mechanical. The name was changed from Foxfire Forest because we thought the Forest part was redundant and confusing.
What inspires your band's sound?
We receive signals from an undisclosed location in space, these are then transfered to an oscillator at Bathurst and Richmond. They are then modified to fit the following parameters: Singer x 2, Guitar x 2, Keyboard x 2, Drums x 2, Trumpet x 1, Bass x 1.
You have guitars in your songs but I wouldn't describe your sound as "guitar-driven". Was this a conscious decision to stand out amongst all the guitar-driven indie bands in our scene?
We may be a large band but no member is superfluous, the way we write now is more focused on interlocking than having one instrument drive it (though that's sometimes the case). We're always trying new ways to write and hone our sound, so that may change.
One of the demos you sent me is called "Black Light Dick Fight". What's the story behind that song?
Our friend Aaron proposed the idea and then we did it. The song is the soundtrack and based on true events.
What do you like best about living in Toronto?
There's diversity, almost every day can be different if you want it to. Toronto has a history and mythology but it isn't often romanticized like Montreal or New York. It seems like that's starting to change - the city seems more vibrant now than it did even six months ago. Crowds are starting to move again and people seem less inhibited.
What do you like least?
There seems to be this attitude of defeatism in the winter and sometimes it seems like things are set up to reward assholes. In a broad scheme of things there can be a definite sense of elitism whether real or perceived. The upside of this is that it provides a sense of competition, the con is that it divides the community. The generally poor urban planning makes it hard to be inspired by your environment yet the people do. People are finally starting to grow some balls so hopefully that'll change.
Where's your favourite place to hang out in the sun?
We can't go into the sun without our suits anymore. But in Toronto...most parks (favourite: Trinity Bellwoods), biking around town and drinking on patios, picnics too. Though not in the sun, night-swimming is pretty fucking awesome.
Any plans for a new release in 2008?
The first album we recorded feels like a different band. We have an album's worth of new material which we're eager to get out, but for the time being we're working on home/studio demos to perfect the songs.
What can people expect this Friday at the Horseshoe?
Sweat, sex and blood.
The Blakes (Seattle), Foxfire, Songs From A Room, Young Rival
Friday, April 25
368 Queen Street West
Call & Response is a series of Q&A's with bands from or playing in Toronto. Photo: Norman Wong.
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