xbxrx Sixth in Sixes

Once banned in our great nation (for mouthing off to border officials), as well as a number of venues and the city of Sunnyvale, California, the Bay Area’s vowel-hating xbxrx make music that is sick and scary enough to ensure they’ll be outlawed once again in their future endeavours. Only their second album since 2000, Sixth in Sixes is a relentless assault of frenzied hardcore packaged in a tight-knit body of malevolent punk rock. Sharing attributes with vehement acts like the Blood Brothers and the Locust, their body of work is as exhilarating and cathartic as the former and as unremitting and abrasive as the latter. "Deaf Ears, Silent Voice” (which is half true) builds and breaks down incessantly for repeated explosions of blistering guitars and bloody vocal shredding. This leads into the not-completely-inaccessible "Gold Cross” and later on "Beat Rolls On,” which flirt with conventional rock song structures. The corresponding strokes on the keyboards give xbxrx an added incentive that hounds looking for something artier than the average hardcore/noise band can relate to, but this is far from new wave and more like "new deprave” — music that will definitely put a chill down your spine and likely rip it out while it’s at it. (Polyvinyl)