You now have the opportunity to purchase the new EP Razzle Dazzle by a band you’ve probably never heard of called The Fantastic Ooze. It is obviously our hope that you will listen to this EP. When you do, it is quite likely that you will say to yourself, “Wow, this is fantastic! The world must hear this!” This is certainly our hope. It is possible, of course, that you will say something like, “Whatever, I’m going out for a drink with so-and-so.” Should this be the case, we only wish that so-and-so is fun and attractive (and possibly promiscuous) and that our record in some very indirect way led to a good drink and a phenomenal evening.
Assuming you do listen to Razzle Dazzle, the first thing you’ll hear is our lead singer David “Tha Professa” Fransen screaming quite passionately. Don’t worry about this. He is neither hurt nor angry. In fact, he is just ecstatic with anticipation of the rock solid groove blending with chaotic droning noise that kicks off opening track “Sea Monkeys (The New Batch).” He calms down a bit and floats a quite pleasant melody over the wash of Camptastic’s guitar and keyboard noisescapes and the ebb and flow of Michael Sosa’s percussive explorations. And yes, that’s an awful lot of water/liquid references for a brief song description, but Sea Monkeys are aquatic creatures and generally feel more comfortable being described in accordance with their natural habitat. In fact, it might be worth extending the water theme to recount the manner in which “Sea Monkeys (The New Batch)” ends much like a wave gently tapering off as it washes up on the rigidly rhythmic sand of second track “Jungle Foot.”
“Jungle Foot,” as the title may suggest, is a far more terrestrial number. Since moving from water to land has a tendency to toy with one’s equilibrium, we tried to establish some rhythmic grounding in the form of celebratory claps before throttling you with a barrage of (jungle) foot-stomping, head-bobbing earthen pop glee. You’ll probably feel a bit nervous and disoriented as the guitar noises and choo-choo train drums keep building in intensity toward the conclusion of the song, but the title track is coming, and those are usually pretty memorable and comfortable or the band probably wouldn’t have named the album after them. “Razzle Dazzle” is no exception, with its choppy guitars, Prince-esque party backbeat and hook hungry vocal lines. It’s likely that the song will fade just as you were starting to sing along, but you can always skip back and listen again. We recommend you listen to the remainder of the EP first though.
“Octastic (Baby)” is a party song. If you’ve always been a big fan of magical octopi saving musicians from an imaginary shipwreck, then this is you’re song. If you have yet to fully establish your opinion on magical octopi and/or imaginary shipwrecks, then maybe this will help guide your decision-making process. The important thing is that you dance, drink and shout a lot while you’re making up your mind. And when you’re tired, take comfort that the warm synths, pulsating groove and dreamy melody of closing epic track “Magic Mary” will leave you feeling like you’ve just clapped and sung along with all your dearest friends (perhaps even your very favorite so-and-so) around some weird drug-soaked campfire.
So now you may wonder a bit about the band behind this curious little record. We’d of course love to sit down get to know each other in person, but your unquestionably packed schedule probably doesn’t allow it. So to summarize, The Fantastic Ooze formed in late 2003 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Our impassioned and often enjoyably chaotic live shows built us a relatively solid fan base fairly quickly. We released an EP In Your Brain in 2004, which in retrospect was probably to soon. In any case, local music magazine SiX TeN SPLiT saw fit to name the record #2 among the best records of the year. As our live shows continued to win new fans, we set to work on our first full length album, Fusion Snakes. Though the album was completed and technically available by the summer of 2005, the hurricane that you may have read about prevented many people from getting their hands on it at that time. Still, local magazines Where Y’At and OffBeat eventually praised its contents, with OffBeat even listing it as one of the Top 50 Louisiana Albums of 2006. Sadly, the aforementioned hurricane forced us to leave our beloved hometown, so we set up shop in Brooklyn, NY in late 2005. We’ve since been working our way into the New York scene via club mainstays like the Knitting Factory, The Delancey and so on while trying to maintain a healthy rapport with our old fans and friends. We’re now fresh off the second annual Octastival in New Orleans, a big celebration of New Orleans’ finest indie rock acts that we organize. With this past year’s Octastival, we were able to facilitate the return of New Orleans glam/goth/rock hero James Hall (who you might know from his previous band The Pleasure Club or his earlier act Mary My Hope) for the first time since his own forced evacuation from the city after Katrina. If you don’t know him then whatever, but he really likes us and big famous bands like Love and Rockets, Ours and Jane’s Addiction always really liked him, so draw your own conclusions.
If you absolutely must know more about this exciting new band with this brilliant new EP, there is plenty more information to be found about The Fantastic Ooze at www.myspace.com/fantasticooze or www.thefantasticooze.com. You can also hear samples of our earlier work and smile at pictures of Octastic, the unwaveringly loveable blue octopus who has always represented The Fantastic Ooze quite fairly and pleasantly. We of course thank you for your time and encourage you to listen to Razzle Dazzle again and again with a slightly creepy euphoric smile on your face all the while.
The Fantastic Ooze