Dizzy Box Nine
Dizzy Box Nine come out of left field with a great pop record that must be heard. Randy Ludwig is a great musician and proving it with well-written and arranged pop tunes that have somewhat of an improvised feel to them. This sets the band apart from the norm, and has helped them craft, what are generally, very playful pieces of music. He produced it with the best results possible for a self-produced platter, and should get all the credit for what is never an easy job there.
I like this band, that’s one thing for sure, but not everything is perfect with anything. You have to listen enough to hear both the beauty and the flaws in a record, and see whether or not the music comes out on top. From the very start “Open Up To Me” shows what promise an entire full-length debut record can bring. It’s a song that sounds like it goes on 4 or 5 minutes because it’s comprised of so many different elements, but in reality, it’s a short pop track like the rest. The following track “Oh Yeah” seems slightly more rushed, but it’s full of energy, and ovrer before you know it, yet , in those three minutes the listener can’t help but feel something special has just happened.
It was smart for Dizzy Box Nine to refrain from releasing the typical EP, common in so many new bands—which can often be a characteristic of a simple lack of quality material. Yet, is not the case here. Singer-Guitarist Randy Ludwig wrote nearly 100 songs for consideration for this record, and they found a way to get it down to the best 12.
You can’t get away from the slinky guitar parts that are written all over this album. Randy Ludwig is a master of just the right amount-of fundamentals applied to his more complex ideas that allow him to shine without boring the listener. There’s a single cut in the shape of “Good” which centers around some wise talk in the lyrics that take you back to innocent times when you could actually-impress a date. This is so good you have-to put it on loop until you can’t take anymore. This track has everything, which is getting hard to come by these days.
Things start getting a lot more playful on “When I Look At You” with its bubbly-pop effects. The sharp melodies are what grab you and don’t let go here. This is another one you can sit back and enjoy all day long. As the record continues, more lyrical styles are revealed. For instance, “Fantasy” is a topic that can go either way. Randy sings, “you’re so dizzy now, you’re trapped inside your fiction-tale”. After a few listens, you get the feeling he just might be speaking directly to you, and you know what this line now means. They make it fun and stick to the basics of dreams, self-doubt, and fulfillment. He sings about keeping an open mind and everything will be alright. It’s a cool song from beginning to end, and measures up nicely with any other track on Electric Illusion.
“Rosie” is another standout. It’s an affectionate song without being a ballad, and you’ll have-to hear it to get the rest. They have even more fun with “Punk Rock Girl” and “Crazy Superstar,” both which have their different ups and downs. The lyrics again are quite revealing. For instance, in Punk Rock Girl you hear “one day I’ll hate the way you go to sleep, so don’t you take this story to the end”. Another seemingly more serious track would be “Adeline” which is very uplifting, and is one of the best tracks. The final track “Samantha’ will touch you all-the more, if you take this advice.
You can’t knock much on this record. There are no fillers here, just 12 pop tunes that seem to naturally flow together to create one complete record.