Here’s a request of sorts for a classic minimal synthpop gem. Xex were a more experimental wave band, formed in South River, New Jersey. They were a mysterious affair, releasing one record in 1980 and disappearing soon after. The band “began” as a high school kazoo trio. Member Waw Pierogi’s interest in science led to several unique delay and echo experiments in the early years, most of which were employed on the band’s debut. However, though outfit had little musical technique, their trials and experiments yielded several songs, and after their first performance, the original trio of Waw, Thumbalina Gugielmo, and Alex Zander brought in two of their friends/fans to round out the lineup. Thus, after several experiments and debates, Xex was officially born in 1978.
The band spent the next two years constructing several tracks utilizing minimal synth techniques, semi-conventional song structures, and male and female vocal experiments. Due to the nature of their project and the band’s limited abilities, live shows were often inconsistent and humanistic, and often featured performance art and video accompianments.
The original pressing of Group:Xex sold little over a thousand copies. Soon after its release, additional members David Anderson and Jon-Boy Diode departed as Xex completed work on a second record, which due to limited funding and a since-deteriorated master tape, has not yet seen the light of day, and may never will. The original trio continued to work together along with new member Cookie Ruggerio (who previous involvement with the band was limited to walking a stuffed cat during a performance of ‘Kitty’). Only a few tracks have surfaced, and mid 80s performances of the band did not include Waw Pierogi.
In 2004, cult interest in the band culminated in a proper reissue of Group:Xex, complete with several demo cuts from the band’s original sessions. Just a year before, Alex Zander passed away from a heart attack.
Here’s the information for the CD release of Group:Xex.
Xex- Group:Xex (reissue)
1. Fashion Hurts
2. You Think
4. Rome On $5 A Day
6. Saint Vitus’ Dance
8. Don’t Blame Me
9. Holland Tunnel
12. Delta Five
13. Fashion Hurts (Demo)
14. Svetlana (Demo)
15. Saint Vitus’ Dance (Demo)
16. Cops (Demo)
17. You Think (Demo)
18. Snga (Demo)
*DOWNLOAD LINK REMOVED- see below for official purchasing options*
I’m not sure how official this is, but a youtube search comes up with a clipped together video for ‘Kitty,’ so take a peek below:
This is one of the few available records I’ve posted as of late, so if you dig on these tracks, be sure to trash these mp3s post-haste and pick yourself up a copy of the cd reissue, which comes complete with extensive liner notes and further information about the band. Click below to order a copy!
ATTENTION, dear readers- you can now get a remastered copy of this LP via the always excellent DARK ENTRIES label, an awesome reissue label based out of the west coast. Click here for more info!