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Outta My Way

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Album Review

The Flys followed up their debut album Holiday Man with Outta My Way, a record that maintains the freewheeling sensibility of its predecessor while kicking up the aggression a bit and connecting its varying sounds a little more concretely. Where the style-juggling of many turn-of-the-millennium alt-metal acts often seems forced and faddish, the Flys seem to have a genuine appreciation for their disparate influences, which unifies their leaps from funky rap-metal to '70s arena rock to poppy grunge to aggressive alt-metal. It also doesn't hurt that the group has a real talent for big hard rock hooks, even bordering on harder-edged (and surprisingly excellent) power-pop on cuts like "My Day" and "Ain't No Stoppin' U." Some of the borrowed hip-hop phrases may come off as a little forced, but unlike many of their rap-metal peers, the Flys can kick up a genuinely funky backbeat with snaky, propulsive basslines when they need to (and here, they sound less like the Red Hot Chili Peppers when they do). While the Flys don't quite have the effortlessly bizarre panache of Faith No More, the range of styles they're capable of pulling off is pretty impressive. For example, the album opener "No Sad Story" quotes N.W.A. and samples L.L. Cool J and the Beach Boys, a virtue and flaw all at once. The Flys' brand of hard rock somehow manages to unite those disparate influences, yet at the same time, those specific references (as well as others scattered around the album) seem very self-conscious; they don't serve much of a purpose within the context of the music except to show off the band's cleverness and eclecticism (even when the latter is already obvious). That's really a minor complaint, though, because overall, Outta My Way is full of inventive post-grunge, post-Korn hard rock, evidence that the Flys are continuing to develop and push ahead.


Formed: 1994 in Hollywood, CA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

The beginnings of Hollywood-based rockers the Flys lay in informal jam sessions between eventual members James Book (bass), Peter Perdichizzi (guitar), Adam Paskowitz (vocals), and Nicky Lucero (drums). Eventually another singer/rapper, Joshua Paskowitz, joined, and the band found themselves signed to Trauma Records. By merging alt-rock and post-grunge with retro sounds, the Flys took a far more original approach than the majority of other late-'90s alternative bands. Prior to the August 1998 release...
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Outta My Way, The Flys
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