Exposé Online banner

Xixxo — Down the World
(Halodjinn BDXOC1, 1994, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1997-02-01

Down the World Cover art

This five-piece from Massachusetts might be familiar to some who saw them open for Gong on their recent swing through New England. At the center of their sound are the soulful vocals of Lizzette Xixxo (pronounced zik'zoh), who brings an intense warmth and unique character to the band's multifaceted sound, sounding more than a hint like The Motels' Martha Davis. Musically, influences seem to be coming in from all quarters, a little neo-prog, a bit of Crimson, hints of Rush, neo-psych, even Zappa touches surface on occasion, as well as bits of mainstream pop and rock. At times the mix is served up in a swirling near-psychedelic maelstrom of effects, at others they dwell in the more conventional prog territory of ever-shifting time and key changes, yet Lizzette's voice adds a certain level of accessibility to even the most complex of their tunes ("Drown" for example), masking an underlying layer of twisted and convoluted rhythms. Because of this, their music tends to deliver on a number of levels, dependent on what the listener is looking for. Keyboards and Guitars alternate power and passion, support and drive, ambience and disconnection, while the rhythm section of Ed Lanouette (bass) and Yuri Zbitnoff (drums) keep the compositional framework in a constant state of forward motion. Of special note is the twenty-five minute five-part suite titled "Aliens," that shows Xixxo at their most spacy and ambient, as well as at their most hard edged and intense, and all points between. This is a difficult album to categorize, stylistically it's all over the spectrum, yet in every case the band's compositional approach is highly original and the arrangements, playing, and singing are equally spirited. One that I can definitely recommended.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 11, 1994 releases

Related artist(s): Xixxo

More info
http://soundcloud.com/core-redonnett/sets/xixxo-down-the-world

Latest news

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more

2019-03-25
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more

2019-03-20
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more

2019-03-03
Seaprog 2019 Lineup Almost Complete – The Seaprog festival in Seattle is scheduled for June 7-9 this year, and they've announced their lineup of performers. The revitalized Trettioåriga Kriget will cap Friday night, perennial favorites Marbin are on Saturday, and District 97 will finish off the fest on Sunday night. In support, they've booked a stellar variety of artists from the Northwest and around the world, including EchoTest, Markus Reuter and Trey Gunn, and the live debut of the amazing Troot project. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Christopher Franke - Klemania – Apparently a special recording to celebrate KLEM day, an electronic music festival in the Netherlands, Franke's Klemania album is both a pleasant surprise and a disappointment. I hate to judge...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues