Raccoon Fighter - Zil
Record Label: Papercup Music
Release Date: Oct. 1, 2013
Like its name implies, the music of Raccoon Fighter is a bit brawny, a bit rugged and a bit messy. And that's just how they prefer it. The Brooklyn trio, who have performed in various bands for years, mark their debut with Zil and holy heck fire is it something. Whether its the distinctly Southern stomper "Delivered" or the old-school throwback "Santa Tereza," Zil opens with a bang and never once relents. The band's first real wow moment comes in the form of "My Ticket," a hip-shaking singalong that has armfuls of crossover appeal and an accessibility that should serve the band well as they press on into 2014. After the buoyant and bopping "Street Urchins" the trio offers up the ragged and sweaty "Down and Out in a Diamond City," a playful ruckus that is both wanton and engaging.
For all the collective charms of the disc's opening half, the album really takes form on the closing triumvirate. "In My Pocket" is a chance at restraint that shows the band's versatility while "Wolf at my Window" seems more than destined for TV placement. Zil closes out with "Pyramid Scheme to Heaven" an absolute masterwork that finds the band firing on all cylinders. Slow-moving, methodical and deeply nuanced, "Pyramid Scheme to Heaven" points to a band that knows exactly what it's doing and moreover, is supremely comfortable in their own skin.
Those two trait should serve the band well as it moves forward. In the end the essence of Raccoon Fighter is ample amounts of polish, punch and panache. There's a verve and zest to each of the songs that grabs at you and forces you to be a part of their inner circle. Accentuated by pounding drums, sculpted bass and a bevy of searing riffs, the music of Raccoon Fighter is everything one needs to rise out of the proverbial doldrums. If this is only the debut, color this writer interested.