Blue Lizard is a four-piece band out of Ridgefield Park, and I have to admit, the fact that they put their ages on their website made me feel really old, because these guys are focused and talented and prolific for their age. Or maybe I am just old and out of touch.
In any case, Unsigned is Blue Lizard’s debut album, and they build on their influences like Sum 41, Black Sabbath, and Incubus to create a dynamic, high-energy sound. “It’s time for the moment you’ve been waiting for,” we hear as the first track, “You Never Know,” slams to life. The energy ramps up and up as the song goes on, never letting up through the strong ending.
“DRAG” samples the “Keep the change, ya filthy animal” part of Home Alone, and it’s these types of little touches that demonstrate Blue Lizard’s sense of humor and self-awareness and keep their music feeling fresh. In the same vein, the band includes two “skits,” creatively mixing spoken word through their music to drive home the theme of their album. The first, “Millennial Mike,” speaks to the Great Divide between parent and child, which has always existed and will always exist in rock ‘n’ roll. “I don’t get it,” the mother says at the end of the track. THAT’S THE FUCKIN’ POINT, MOM.
While keeping a consistent sound throughout, the band shows off their musical variety: the breakdown in “Hard” gives off a jazzy feel, and “Bridge to You” is a rare ballad on this lively and intense album. “Wild Stallions,” a more upbeat track, tells the listener to “Take the chances you get in life/Don’t let them pass you by/They may never come again/Why live a life of regret?” This is a band that knows they’re at the beginning of their career, that the only direction is up; and their enthusiasm and dedication show in every second of this album.
“We Will Return Your Call,” a second skit, is a recording of a voicemail from a record producer who says he’s interested in Blue Lizard’s music. It closes out the album with a hard statement that there is much more to come from these guys – and I would expect nothing less from a band bursting with ideas and creative energy and eagerness to prove themselves. Check Blue Lizard out on their website and give Unsigned a listen on Bandcamp or Spotify.
Carrie is N.J. Racket's copy editor and contributor of many album and EP reviews. She also has a puppy named Halo and loves Mac N Cheese.