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XHOHX

RIO/Avant-Prog • Belgium


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Xhohx biography
Xhohx is a Belgian duo of Ramon Ribas Coca (guitar, drum programming) and Oregolakatzor (bass). They play a chaotic yet organized form of heavy avant garde rock, with influences from Japanese Avant-rock bands (Ruins) and from American bands (Flying Luttenbachers) and also from the highly esteemed Belgian band Univers Zero. They themselves state their influences to be as they write in their Myspace: "Chaotic and Organic No Wave, Poly-rhythmic and Atonal Music".
Their music is highly complex, energetic and relentless.
Their first full length from 2007, Karyotypexplosion, will appeal to all listeners into "organized chaos" avant-rock.

==Assaf Vestin (avestin)==

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4.23 | 6 ratings
Karyotypexplosion
2007

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XHOHX Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Karyotypexplosion by XHOHX album cover Studio Album, 2007
4.23 | 6 ratings

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Karyotypexplosion
Xhohx RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

5 stars Hey extreme prog metal addicts. Can you literally NOT get enough of all musical nooks and crannies filled with every prog trick in the book? Incessant mathcore time signatures on steroids and brutal dissonant chords forced to perform tricks that should be illegal by international law? Random tempos that will make your head explode? Ping pong prog taken to the most extreme levels imaginable? Hey! We got that too. While many a band seem to layer pop hooks in slick layer of production and suave compositional layout, some bands like Belgium's XHOHX just go for the jugular. Think of this mere duo of Ramon Ribas Coca (guitar, drum programming) and Oregolakatzor (bass) as the genetic lab experiment that mixes the DNA of Morbid Angel, Ruins, The Flying Luttenbachers and Sleepytime Gorilla Museum and then something goes terribly wrong.

This band had no intention of playing it even keel and stretching out all their ideas in a decade long career. None of that BS. This noise factory with the palindrome moniker just let it all out in one huge burst of freakifying mind[%*!#]ery in a 46 minute musical statement and then jumped back into the murky depths from whence they came and on their one and only release KARYOTYPEXPLOSION you can experience the entire history of prog attributes in this one listening experience. However, i guarantee you very well could lose your mind in the process. Well, the most chaotic and extreme moments of prog that is. No neo-prog or sweet melodies here at all.

There are literally a gazillion bands in the history of prog and metal that have branched out into a gazillion directions creating two of the wealthiest nooks of the entire rock universe, but even in this land of plenty, once in a while an artist occasionally manages to defy all the odds and create something utterly unique and virtually existing in its own little evolutionary branch of the musical universe. A scant few bands such as Mr Bungle, Unexpect, Henry Cow, Samla Mammas Manna and Frank Zappa literally went somewhere no one ever thought possible and thus charted whole new methodologies of musical construct. XHOHX follows suit but goes so far, so fast that it will takes decades for anyone to latch onto this one.

XHOHX engages in a newer form of progressive rock recently tagged brutal prog, the kind of avant-prog that Yugen took to new extremes by unapologetically increasing every aspect of the holy progginess oneness and then dialing it up to the eleventh power. This is music where chaotic dissonance runs supreme but like any really good music that delves in all the most extreme attributes you can throw into the boiling pot, XHOHX manages to smooth it all out with an underlying atmospheric presence that sort of streamlines the overall flow into an RIO / avant-prog paradigm that would be recognizable to fans of Univers Zero, Art Zoyd, Present or even Thinking Plague for that matter.

However, that's pretty much where any comparisons to other bands stop. The rest of the equation is pure brutality. Brutal metal delivery, brutal dissonance, brutal tempos, brutal vocals, brutal brutal prog to the friggin' max. This is truly technical music that is bleak and devoid of anything warm and fuzzy whatsoever. While the album primarily consists of bantering angular blasts of brutal metal riffs, schizoid vocals that range from insane asylum shrieks to growling grunts, this is truly a cacophonous maelstrom of the most deranged soundtrack of the insane you could EVER imagine and believe me, i've heard a lot of this insane maniac music. This one blows it all away. Even mathcore pigs like Psychopus and Behold?. The Arctopus would cower in fear in the shadow of XHOHX.

Point blank: XHOHX is without doubt THE MOST EXTREME MUSIC i've heard. EVER!!!! This is relentless and unforgiving. A tumultuous clamor and clatter of the ages. While the album generally runs on extreme mathcore mode for its first eleven tracks with the fastest and jagged angularities possible, the final track "Nukleark" breaks the trend of punkish shorter time lengths and stretches out to a proggifying near 15 minute time span, however despite remaining as unrelenting and earache inducing as the previous 30 minutes, this one actually engages in quieter moments without the heavily distorted guitar runs attacking like a bombed ammunition factory.

BE WARNED!!! This is brutal prog for brutality's sake, however if you absolutely crave THEEEEEEEE MOST extreme type of music possible, then you cannot go another day without hearing XHOHX and their monumental masterpiece KARYOTYPEPLOSION. There is method to this madness. Careful attentive listening is a must. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Listen at your own risk. Even the few piano runs are so scary that you'll want to duck under your covers and pray for your soul to escape permanent damnation for just hearing this bantering musical blasphemy. I'm in! And find this mess irresistible when i'm really in a VERY naughty mood ;)

 Karyotypexplosion by XHOHX album cover Studio Album, 2007
4.23 | 6 ratings

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Karyotypexplosion
Xhohx RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by avestin
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars The soundtrack to your seizure

This is complex, hectic, wild, demented.. Fantastic! I mean, fantastic for me, as this is one of the types of music I like. Disjointed, angular, at times disharmonic, heavy and crazy. Shouts, almost growling in style, are appearing every once in a while alongside other mutated forms of vocals, but for the most part, the guitars, bass and programmed drums (though done very well and not very noticeable to me that they are indeed programmed) move this forward frantically and without much rest. There is some of everything here; some Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, some math-rock intricacies, Japanese avant rock bands such as Ruins, sometimes even Univers Zero comes to my mind, and I hear this industrial feel maybe due to the form of the music and its beat. All this is mixed and served in a mélange that makes it hard to decipher what influences are there and what are the ingredients. But, whatever is in there, I like the result. The tracks are mostly short, but are full of high energy and madness. And while it is complex and may seem like chaos, there is a form and particular sound and order here which make this for me quite accessible, and an entertaining listen. With the promotional material that came with this release, there is a short "bio" that says: "Created in 2002, XHOHX originates from two musicians' will to get rid of their own musical education, fruit of a lobotomy cleverly orchestrated right from childhoos.. XHOHX is motivated by the atonal polyrhytmic language in the spirit of No Wave and Rock In Opposition bands". I think that this is in no way the work of brainless people, but rather compositions which will appeal to listeners already used to this sort of music and that will demand a lot from people who want to get into it. To me this is a great find, an album that breaks the usual routine, an album that opens doors to new sounds and possibilities, music that manages (as I see it) to dive into the waters of far end avant rock and yet stay above the too-deep mark (my personal mark that is) and dwell in a level that is a comfortable and even natural "depth" for me. I also would like to state that I think the music, while being very complex is well done and performed and that the drum programming is very well done (as it is a the corner stone of this kind of music). This release is recommended to fans of avant-garde rock, and all those influences mentioned above. I look forward to their future release.

3.75-3.85 stars in PA scale, rounded up to 4 stars.

Thanks to avestin for the artist addition.

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