‘I’m Not Well’ is a record to get lost in, and a record to find yourself in.
Label: Spinefarm Records
Released: 19th August 2016
From the opening hush of ‘I’m Not Well’, Black Foxxes are in complete control. As the title-track explodes, so does your heart as the band somehow marry a last-chance saloon with the self-belief to take on anything and everything. Drenched in emotion but drawing power from those admissions and confrontations, Black Foxxes set the agenda quickly. From here on in, this is their world. Welcome to the party. It’s slow jams forever.
After an extensive build, expectations for the band’s debut were running high. ‘I’m Not Well’ goes above and beyond. Using every moment as a chance for expression, the album is a vibrant, shuddering beast. Rugged, unpredictable but beautiful, the eleven tracks tumble together to form a welcoming landscape. ‘Whatever Lets You Cope’ is refrained and distant, ‘Husk’ gets close enough for you to feel its breath on your cheek and ‘Waking Up’ is a bundle of nervous energy, skipping about the place but desperately trying to keep eye contact.
See, after the opening admission of ‘I’m Not Well’, the rest of the album climbs upwards. Instead of dwelling and picking at itself, Black Foxxes’ debut accepts, discusses and rages.
Because the record is so fraught, so honest and so open, there are some obvious comparisons to be made. But what Black Foxxes are doing is brand new. Not only do they offer comfort, they create a powerful cinema to proudly let it all out. And let you all in.
Black Foxxes’ debut is deeply personal. You can feel the battle behind every moment but it’s also a thrilling ride. From the destruction of ’How We Rust’, through the agility of ‘Maple Summer’ and out, towards the pointed ‘Home’, ‘I’m Not Well’ is a record to get lost in. It’s also a record to find yourself in. Ali Shutler