More Than Just a Dream – Fitz and the Tantrums

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More Than Just a Dream is a follow-up to Fitz and the Tantrums debut, Pickin’ Up the Pieces, which included the infectious hit “MoneyGrabber.” Fitz and the Tantrums are a Los Angeles-based guitar-less sextet that cranks out upbeat Motown-inspired pop tunes. The band was founded by longtime sound engineer Michael “Fitz” Fitzpatrick in 2008 who shares the vocal lead with Noelle Scaggs. While the album has some punchy rhythms and catchy choruses in songs like “Out of My League,” “The Walker,” and “The End,” it is somewhat lacklustre. According to Fitz, “the song sounds happy and playful, but it’s a dark tale of obsession that is really about our own fixation with chasing our dreams and knowing there is always a price to pay…” The album does not seem dark at all, perhaps indicating the band has yet to pay the price for their success. Fitz and the Tantrums sound best when Scaggs’ vocals add some punch and horns and keyboards dominate the arrangements. A little more Motown could go a long way toward making a good thing great.

Rating: ★★★½☆

-Michelle McChristie