2010-03-22dear god, i hate myself it's funny how clearly i remember first finding out about xiu xiu: one of their tracks appeared on a punk rock sampler i bought for $1 at vans warped tour many years ago. at the time, i was struck by how it was different from anything i'd heard before; i didn't know what to make of it, but that track eventually grew on me.
since then, i've had this love/hate thing for xiu xiu's material: sometimes, i think their stuff is different and intriguing, and i love all the subtle sounds embedded within; other times, i find their stuff weird and art-school pretentious, and i don't understand it at all.
singer jamie stewart contributed some vocals on the most recent los campesinos album. i think i can hear some of his haunting shouting (at around 1:29) on the track "the sea is a good place to think of the future", one of my favourites on that disc.
los campesinos - the sea is a good place to think of the future
i went back to listening to some xiu xiu. meh, i still found it weird.
last month, they released their seventh album "dear god, i hate myself". i was tempted to buy that album for the title alone. i checked it out, and the first two tracks instantly hooked me; i knew i had to get this. but hmv megastore and cheap thrills didn't stock it (yet?), and i was too lazy to search for it at other shops.
earlier this week, on my way to my parents' place, i made a short detour to hmv fairview and bought their one copy.
i must say, this is one of the more minimal (i.e. cheap) packaging i've seen. a simple digipak, no booklet, no label on the disc itself:
but it did come with a code for some bonus tracks, and a somewhat inappropriate sticker.
so i've been listening to this for the past couple of days. my favourite track is the opener, "gray death", which sounds almost like a pop song, compared to their usual experimental stuff.
xiu xiu - gray death
the second track is another highlight.
xiu xiu - chocolate makes you happy
by the third track, the album goes back into weird, experimental territory. but the title track is also not bad.
xiu xiu - dear god, i hate myself
edit: i just saw their videos for the new songs, and they're kind of messed up [not safe for work]. actually, i am not so surprised by those videos. after all, xiu xiu did sell a super deluxe version of this album that included a t-shirt printed with their blood.