A New York band that melds smart pop with Afro-tropical rhythms? Put away your topsiders, this is not Vampire Weekend (although there are similarities). But do strap on your best dance shoes, because The Fancy Shapes come down hard on the "beat" side of Afrobeat. The disc in question is Fun City, and you will dance. Most of the 12 songs here recall the wit and groove appreciation of the Tom Tom Club, matching vocalist Sabrina Roberts' beguiling voice to savvy lyrics and irresistible rhythms. Guitarist Seth Kaufman, a former Page Six reporter, turns a writerly eye on party music, whether deconstructing the concept grammatically ("I party, you party, we party," conjugates "We Party"), the liberating breakup dance tune "I Can Can-Can," or succumbing to its animalistic impulses (on the Blondie-esque instant single,"Shut Up & Kiss Me"). Even the album closer "Pants on a Horse," which recounts the court battle of feather dancer/burlesque heroine Sally Rand, veers into party territory, imagining the dancer in "heaven's perpetual rave." Elsewhere, New York City's dreams and rituals are celebrated, from "Meet Cute"'s desire to find a special someone in a special way, to the annual "Spring Fever" ("Someone call a lawyer / to get an enjoinder / against going back to work"), to the unique magic of the "Coney Island Mashup," which promises, "If you can't make out here, you can't make out anywhere." Smart lyrics, yes, but it's the feverish rhythms that will get your feet moving. Sun-dappled guitars skitter over the propulsive grooves of drummer Dan Roth and bassist Seth Walter. Fun City mixes tropical heat with urban angst. Spoiler alert!: The heat wins
Performance CreditsFancy Shapes Primary Artist
Seth Kaufman Guitar,Group Member
Ray Turull Conga,Guest Appearance
Lee Farber Percussion,Conga,Guest Appearance
Sabrina Roberts Vocals,Group Member
Daniel Berchanko Guitar,Group Member
Seth Walter Bass,Group Member
Dan Roth  Percussion,Drums,Group Member
Technical CreditsEli Janney Engineer
Ganda Suthivarakom Composer,Lyricist
Seth Kaufman Composer,Lyricist
Kathleen Diresta Band Photo
Joan Seidman Band Photo
Jeanne Verdoux Cover Design
Fancy Shapes Composer
Susan Pottinger Lyricist
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Fun City based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Just heard Shut Up and Kiss Me at Christie Craig's website. Loved the song so much I had to order the CD.
I heard tracks on Jango.com. Like Vampire Weekend with a girl singer. Very cool. Songs are funnier, too. The rocker, Shut Up and Kiss Me is totally great.