Their real names are a mystery. But their sound was unmistakable: a synth-enhanced noise rock explosion laced with verbal nonsense that defied comparison. XBXRX formed in Mobile, AL, in the spring of 1998 and headed into the studio when the lead guitarist had not yet entered high school. The Singer/Other Guitar Player, the Bass Player, the Guitar Player, the Drummer, and the Keyboard Player debuted with Greatest Hits, Vol. 2 on NFJM in 1998 and released singles and EPs with Anal Log, Troubleman, Sound on Sound, and Arkam. A full-length full of discordant fury, Gop Ist Minee was released on 5RC in 2001. The band toured with the likes of Unwound, Deerhoof, Q and Not U, and the Sissies, wearing various uniforms and playing short, frenzied sets. Four venues in their hometown of Mobile banned them, as did the city of Sunnyvale, CA. XBXRX broke up in the spring of 2002, though they released some previously recorded albums, such as Mardi Gras, a collaboration with Mr. Quintron and Miss Pussycat. The breakup proved short-lived as the band released Sixth in Sixes in September 2005, this time on the Polyvinyl label. Wars followed in 2007, preceded by a handful of 7" singles and concert-only promos.
© Ron DePasquale /TiVo
© Ron DePasquale /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released April 10, 2007 | Polyvinyl Records
Sheer, unbridled noise exuberance is the modus operandi for Mobile, AB's fearsome/fun XBXRX, and their third, full-length album Wars finds the group refining their sound while losing none of their visceral charm. Guitars, effects boxes, drums and larynx-ripping, screamo vocals collide in an outfreakage of distortion and adrenaline, leaving little in the way of breathing room on the album's 12 tracks. It's exhausting stuff, but not in a typical "noise rock" fashion -- think the Boredoms with a little more allegiance to rock song structure. There's a little start/stop, math rock complexity to some of the tunes, but nothing pushing them into Modest Mouse territory. The way XBXRX do noise rock puts them closer to the Pixies and Dismemberment Plan than any Wolf Eyes-like bombast, and that makes them unique in a genre becoming more and more crowded with meretricious posers. © J. Scott McClintock /TiVo
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