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Xiu Xiu is as bleak and cynical as ever

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Xiu Xiu, "Forget"
  • Xiu Xiu, "Forget"

Jamie Stewart’s eccentric Northern California group Xiu Xiu has been wildly prolific in the lead-up to Forget. They’ve collaborated with offbeat jazz and noise artists, but also recorded a cover of the Twin Peaks soundtrack that sounded nearly mainstream. On Forget, the collective expands to a dozen musicians, including Deerhoof drummer Greg Saunier and electronica outsider Charlemagne Palestine. The resulting 10 tracks are rich and unusually melodic, while retaining the same scary, often whispered tenor for which Stewart is infamous. Lyrics from the near-hip-hop opener “The Call” to the closing spoken-word mood piece “Faith, Torn Apart” are as bleak and cynical as ever, yet we can almost see Stewart wink. Xiu Xiu has made a fairly successful career from regularly calling forth the angel of death, though the band should be careful what it wishes for.
File next to: Bon Iver, Circuit des Yeux, Grouper

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