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 V.21 No.14 | April 5 - 11, 2012 

Sonic Reducer

Xiu Xiu Always (Polyvinyl / Bella Union)

Xiu Xiu's latest contribution to the world of music seems, at first, to be a little easier for the average listener to swallow with tracks like "Beauty Towne" or "Joey's Song." Jamie Stewart does a wonderful job pairing disturbing lyrics with a synth-pop backing that makes you wanna dance. However, it eventually takes a dive into the shrieking sob-yelling over electro noise that fans have become accustomed to, starting with "I Luv Abortion." (Andrew Grey Johnson)

White Fence Family Perfume (Volumes 1 and 2) (Woodsist)

I'd be surprised if less than 90 percent of Family Perfume reviews drop Syd Barrett's name in describing White Fence's music. Yeah, it sounds a bit like Syd Barrett's solo records. Let's move on. White Fence has got its shit down, with plonking bass, shredding guitar leads, Echoplex treatment, and keys on top of countrified acoustic strumming and picking. Pleasantly trippy lyrics. Even though there’s a total of 30 songs across both volumes, they're all quality works, and that in itself is pretty impressive. White Fence played here once. I can't remember how it sounded, but I'm pretty sure that's not because it sucked. Volume 1 came out April 3. Volume 2 follows on May 15. (Geoffrey Plant)

Frankie Rose Interstellar (Slumberland)

It isn't every day an artist releases an album that is accessible while breaking into new territory. Frankie Rose's Interstellar loses the trappings of a backing band and drifts further from the well-worn paths of her peers, gaining a whole new sound in the process. And it's great. The hooks and revival pop fun created by Frankie Rose and The Outs are all still there, but they’re shot to the moon and not coming down any time soon. Highlights include "Know Me" and "Daylight Sky." (John Wagner)


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