Despite the evident humor in their songs, Fenix TX have often been accused of lacking an identity. The band was initially known as Riverfenix but had to change their name to Fenix TX, after a cease and desist order from representatives of the late actor and musician River Phoenix. At the time of the band’s formation, Riverfenix was composed of William Salazar, the guitarist, Damon DeLaPaz, the drummer, and Carl Lockstedt, the vocalist. The band would later recruit a bassist ( Adam Lewis) and another drummer (Donnie Reyes), which ultimately cut the short-lived tenure of Carl Lockstedt.
With William Salazar on the vocals, the band quickly lit up the Texas pop-punk scene, performing alongside bands such as Good Riddance and 30 Foot Fall. The band released their first album, Riverfenix, in December 1997, with the track “Speechless” garnering significant airplay on radio and therefore attracting the attention of major labels. In 2001, the band released their second album, Lechuza, which featured raucous and more energetic songs compared to previous albums. Lechuza debuted at position 87 on the Billboard 200 with the single “Threesome” peaking at position 66 on the UK Singles Chart.
The new album’s change in sound and style was attributed to Adam Lewis and Damon DeLaPaz’s constant disapproval of their previous releases. The duo wanted a change of style to songs that the band would enjoy playing onstage. The growing rifts between William Salazar and the other DeLaPaz and Adam Lewis ultimately led to the band’s disbandment in September 2002. Although the band reunited for a couple of shows, later on, they have never released a third album. Here are the top ten Fenix TX songs.
10. Flight 601
“Flight 601” is the first track on the band’s 1999 album, Fenix TX. Along with the third track in the album, “Surf Song,” this track was one of the few tracks that had not previously appeared in the previous album, Riverfenix. The lyrics to this song, “I’m never coming back for anything,” suggest that the writer is on a flight to get away from someone they value.
9. Beating a Dead Horse
Although Fenix TX’ album, Lechuza, may not be the best introduction to a first-time pop-punk listener, it is suitable for anyone who has listened to the genre for some time. “Beating a Dead Horse,” the ninth song from the album, is another track that really stands out for me. Not only does the track feature incredible screaming vocals from William Salazar, but the guitar work is also quite interesting.
8. Minimum Wage?
Fenix TX’s 1997 album remains to be a classic for any pop-punk fan. “Minimum Wage” is the third track from the album, Riverfenix. Like most other songs from the album, this track was re-recorded for their 1999 album after the band changed its name. The song is about the struggles of being in the minimum wage bracket in the US.
7. Abba Zabba
This track is up here largely due to its relatability with the line, “Don’t live with frustration, I’ve learned from years of patience, Your day will come.” which is one of the greatest lines you will ever hear in a pop-punk song. The track has a bunch of other quotes, and it is a song that encourages you to look forward to better times ahead.
“Speechless” is a catchy, heart-in-hand punk track that is contained in the band’s debut album, Riverfenix. “Speechless” is one of Fenix TX’s most popular songs and is a must-play during the band’s live shows. The song has a catchy chorus and is one of the good old Fenix TX songs that caught the attention of everyone in the pop-punk scene.
5. Katie W
It took me quite a while to like this song since I was more hooked to their previous material. However, I am glad that I finally became a big fan of their 2001 album, Lechuza. “Katie W” is the second track from the album and is about being dumped but still having feelings for your old girlfriend. The track has a hyperactive guitar-driven sound from James Love, and the vocals are well harmonized.
4. Something Bad is Gonna Happen
Lechuza was always going to have a couple of tracks in the list and our number five song in the top ten Fenix Tx songs wouldn’t be it without this track. “Something Bad is Gonna Happen” is the fourth track from the album and it contains some metal elements and a quite catchy chorus. “Hey you want it. Hey we’ll get it. Hey, steal the attention from everybody.”
“Tearjerker” is one of the most liked songs from the 2001 album, Lechuza. The heartfelt track has an impressive flow that features some rolling drum beats from Damon DeLaPaz. This track is quite significant in the band’s catalog since it showed how their sound had matured from a typical punk group to a band that was having fun belting out amazing tunes. My favorite line from the song is, “Make my heart believe a want is not a need.” The song was well written, and the catchy lyrics will remind you of people you loved a long time ago but no longer see each other.
2. All My Fault
The number two song in our list of the top ten Fenix TX songs is a song that is quite relatable to all of us, especially in our relationships when we think it’s our fault when things don’t work out. The track is quite significant in the band’s catalog since it threw them to the mainstream pop-punk scene after being used as a soundtrack in the MTV movie Jailbait. The track is also featured as a soundtrack in the popular video game Dave Mirra Freestyle BMX 2. The band also released a video for the song, which earned their record label a major deal with MCA Records.
1. Phoebe Cates
If you’ve watched the 1982 movie Fast Times at Ridgemont High, then you probably know who Phoebe Cates is. This track which is contained in the band’s 2001 album, Lechuza, is a show of the band members’ crush on Phoebe Cates, who stars in the movie. The track gets into detail, describing their favorite scene in the movie, which is a pool scene where Phoebe Cates removes her bikini top. The great pop-punk tune features some amazing drum fills and remarkable instrumentals that make the song quite a fantastic listen. The song has been used as the official soundtrack for the movie “American Pie 2.”
Top 10 Fenix TX Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2021
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