Skip to main content
Loading...

Featured Post

Game Of Thrones Season 8 - End Game With Sinhala Subtitles

Flipboard

Flipboard

XXL - Puff O’Gigio Music Album Reviews

On their fourth album together, Xiu Xiu and Larsen create a sense of cinematic whimsy anchored around a mythological creature who helps with household chores.

Xiu Xiu and Larsen, or XXL, lace their bruising collaborative music with a prankster’s humor. For two decades, Xiu Xiu founder Jamie Stewart has added a sly silliness to his noise-pop Petri dishes of human brutality, once rhyming “vigorous” with “pig-orous.” The scuzzed-up post-rock of Italian four-piece Larsen, meanwhile, skews outré. They once recorded a whole album with Swans’ Michael Gira while shrouded by a dark screen, while 2016’s breathtaking Of Grog Vim used instrumentals to frame the narrative of the supposed visionary for which it was named.

XXL’s largely instrumental fourth album, Puff O’Gigio, is a clash of experimental tics and post-punk throb, pulling the outlandish tendencies of both bands into vivid widescreen frames. In the past, XXL’s three albums split the difference between Larsen’s hypnagogic soundscapes and Xiu Xiu’s overblown melodies, with bright hooks that could sometimes pass for Stewart’s own darkened pop. Recorded in one week during December 2016 in Turin, Puff O’Gigio gathers these impulses with a more even-handed approach. Now 13 years since their debut together, Ciautistico!, XXL has reached a new crest of collaborative motion.

Puff O’Gigio thrives on a cinematic sense of whimsy, telegraphed by the album’s titular figure—“a mythological, genetically modified character” that they say is a chimera of the Italian translation of Smurf and Ed Sullivan’s mouse marionette, Topo Gigio. XXL suggest these 11 tracks inhabit “the same colorful, intersectional world as the character,” but that underplays this album’s boundless sense of scale; Puff O’Gigio is only the steward at the threshold of some bright, bleeding fantastical realm.

At moments, this album teems with sun-guzzling optimism. The exploratory “Welcome to My Planet,” for instance, opens with a haunting high pitch before a flurry of bleeps announces a hypnotic guitar pattern, a ruckus of chatter, and a nonsense melody from Larsen’s Paolo Dellapiana. Conjuring Thom Yorke’s deepest trances, the effect is oddly serene. “Ghost Maid” delivers punch-the-air joy, with kaleidoscopic synths shooting through a vortex of bass. Larsen’s Fabrizio Modonese Palumbo offers a spoken-word ode to a benevolent ghost who helps with household chores—presumably, Puff O’Gigio itself. His words pierce the veil with emotion: “There is no way to embrace you/There is no way to feel you when you land on my fingertip.” This love song to an imagined creature hits you unexpectedly, evoking a deep yearning for human connection.

With its looming soundscapes and twitch-inducing rattles, Puff O’Gigio sometimes feels like an uneasy phantasmagoria or the exploration of some alien landscape where unseen nasties lurk in the dark. “Polar Bear Boogie Part 01” plays up the eeriness with droning electric guitars that recall Six Organs of Admittance, while the seesaw of carnivalesque synths and low-end rumble during “Queen of Koalas” envelops you like quicksand. Most sinister of all is the minimalist shadowplay of “To Carol Rama,” a Stewart-led horror that recalls Shirley Jackson’s nightmare-inducing tale, “The Lottery.” “Why curse Satan as the cause of all of your troubles?” Stewart whispers grimly through vocals layered with wraith-like hiss.

As it plays off a sense of wonder and a creeping notion of menace, Puff O’Gigio feels like it’s always shifting beneath you, a sense captured by an album cover that could be a satellite view of some unknown geographical formation or a distorted image of an earlobe. It’s an apt fit for a record where frequencies oscillate with a sense of embryonic discovery; by embracing the fantastical, XXL find a new frequency of their own.


View the original article here

Comments

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Loading...

Popular posts from this blog

Dell XPS 13 9380 (2019) Review

Dell's flagship laptop returns to us in 2019 with refreshed specs, a brand new webcam design and a cheaper model. We review the XPS 13 9380 in full.
Should I Buy The Dell XPS 13 (2019)?
The XPS 13 for 2019 ticks all the boxes. It looks great, the build quality is excellent, it’s nice and portable and has a wide range of specs to choose from.
While not a massive upgrade from last year's model, it’s had some solid refinement including getting the webcam back into the top bezel and also introduces a more affordable Core i3 edition.

Huawei P30 Pro Release Date, Price & Specs Rumours

Huawei's MWC press conference didn't include an announcement of the P30 range. Instead, it will hold a launch event in Paris at the end of March. We round up rumours, speculation and more on the new Huawei line-up, including the expected P30 release date, price and specifications.

Samsung Galaxy S9 vs Samsung Galaxy S10e

Samsung's Galaxy S range has been updated and here we compare the S10e - the new 'lite' model - to last years' Galaxy S9 to help you decide which phone is best for you.
Should I Buy The Samsung Galaxy S10e Or Samsung Galaxy S9?
The S10e could be the sleeper hit of this year. It doesn’t have the embedded fingerprint sensor of the S10 and S10 Plus or their triple cameras, but it comes with the same processors, new screen design, ultra-wide camera, and all in a compact and comfortable format with a smaller price-tag.
That being said, the S9 is still an excellent device, and its new, lower price makes it a definite bargain.

iHealth Core Review

This smart scale from iHealth offers detailed body composition measurements, from BMI to visceral fat rating. Find out what we think in our iHealth Core review.
Should I Buy The iHealth Core? We like the way that the Core and Lite scales interact with the other iHealth products, and the Core offers a bunch of useful metrics with which to monitor your health. Setup is easy and the app's graphs give a decent visual representation of your health-metric trends as you progress.

Huawei Mate 20 X Review

The Huawei Mate 20 X is an obscenely large smartphone but it has many of the features of the Mate 20 Pro for less. Here’s our full review of the huge premium slab
Should I Buy The Huawei Mate 20 X?
With a bigger screen, bigger battery and smaller notch than the Mate 20 Pro, the Huawei Mate 20 X also has the same camera set up and adds a headphone jack. If you want the most screen possible, it might be for you. 
You lose the curved display, wireless charging, full water resistance and secure Face ID but for many that won’t matter if a huge display, outstanding camera and great performance are top of your list. If you want a normal size phone, get the Mate 20 Pro.

Like Fan Page