Tantrums Tear Up The Space

Photos By Alyssa Jayson
Fitz and the Tantrums Perform the Space at Westbury
Photos By Alyssa Jayson

Imagine if there was a perfect spot in your neighborhood, just down the street from your favorite pizza restaurant where you can see great music without the hassle of the big city. Imagine perhaps that the nirvana you’re dreaming of also has a cool area to sit, chill out and have a cocktail. Then imagine that the space had a great flow, giant chandeliers; and easy access to the bathrooms.

This dreamy nirvana does exist for music fans and it’s taken the form of The Space at Westbury, a former movie theatre that has been lovingly transformed into a really great mini hot spot; where up and coming artists can showcase themselves in the best possible way.

Fitz and The Tantrums have been doling out their vibey tunes since 2008. Their debut studio album, Pickin’ Up the Pieces, released in August 2010, received critical acclaim and garnered the No. 1 position on the Billboard Heatseekers chart. The group is currently on tour supporting the release of their new CD, More Than Just A Dream.

Their signature videos are a blast back to the 80’s with a modern Motown twist. Fitz and The Tantrums consists of lead singer, Michael Fitzgerald and vocalist Noelle Scaggs. They’re backed by a full band including a sax player James King; drummer John Wicks; bassist Joseph Karnes and keyboardist Jeremy Ruzumna. They met in college and have been working hard perfecting their soulful sound that has been cautiously crafted and features an underlying sexy alt pop allure.

Their live show entices with a colorful light show that makes you want to shake your booty. As their set continued, Fitz told the crowd that he better not see anybody on their cell phones, texting. That’s not what it’s about when you come to our show; it’s about getting up and dancing.  The crowd responded and cheered as he whirled into the next song.

Vocalist Noelle Scaggs has a delicious voice that cozies up next to Fitz’s lead like a sleek panther sliding next to its mate. Watching her live reminded me of the classic Motown era days that stirred up the music lover in all of us.

Their new record features the hit singles, “Fools Gold” and “The Walker.” Both tunes have haunting ethereal pop qualities that take you back to new wave and then catapult you forward releasing a silky modernism that enchants and delights.

Music nirvana was found on a lazy Tuesday evening at The Space in Westbury, Long Island where the lights shimmered and the crowd roared marching in a new revolution of provocative indie pop music with a spicy helping of soul on the side.

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