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Album Review: "Shift and Shadow" by XIXA

It's October 26th.

Who else is really thinking about Halloween? It's on the weekend at this point...after having a kid, I've only dressed up in a costume once!

Who cares.

It's still the best holiday there is. So, perhaps you've notched that this month, I've been working a theme towards the big day. The day when the veil between the spirit world and the human world is thin...and perhaps that's why I read so much about Coheed and Cambria...

So, I've been trying to supply everybody with the perfect soundtrack for all the Elsas that will be showing up at your doors trying not to scare you. Let's bring Halloween back! Frankly, this CD has been sitting on my desk for a few days now...I've held off.

XIXA plays a version of a South American music, Chicha.

I have no idea what it is, so I'm just going to tell you what their songs said to me.

The psychedelic roots of the band poke through the ground...if this band were a house... we'd be tripping over the fuzz and rolling midranges.

The music leaps around like Hop Frog. If the songs weren't the perfect four minute length, I'd call this wildly progressive.

The vocals warble featuring an influence by Urge Overkill, but somehow darker. From time to time, we are given a break in our trek through the house. Then we get music that wouldn't sound out of place telling us to go to the lobby. Even in the cover of Pleateau by the Meat Puppets, or by the Meat Puppets and Nirvana.

I was certain the Nirvana version was the ultimate, but now it's been reduced to the penultimate version. XIXA took the best bits of the famous Unplugged In New York recording of it, and added their own, to create a dark vision the Meat Puppets could have never expected.

That's what XIXA does. They take a music, darken it, and spin it their way until it becomes something the likes of which has never been heard.

Wearing their influences on their sleeves, they will make you yearn for more. In a day and age where all the chord progressions have been used and even though everything that's capable of being done has been done...

XIXA takes the role of Marco Polo because you've never heard anything like this.