Oxx
The Skeleton is Just a Coat Hanger...


4.0
excellent

Review

by Dean M. CONTRIBUTOR (29 Reviews)
August 25th, 2019 | 17 replies


Release Date: 08/16/2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Are you watching closely?

Take a good, long look at the cover of this album. Drink in the abstract chaos of that pixelated vortex. Read the full title: The Skeleton Is Just a Coat Hanger; These Are the Black Strings That Make You Dance. Read it again; absorb every word like the curveballs that they are. With the presentation of their album, Oxx are doing more than just piquing your interest. They’re setting the tone, establishing expectations for the experience they’re offering: a labyrinthine, nigh inscrutable experience whose scope far exceeds anything its 27-minute runtime would suggest.

At first, I made the mistake of not taking those expectations seriously. I believed that “Labyrinth (Minotaur Hymn)” and “Screwdriver Hymn,” the album’s first two tracks, were the real tone setters, and those two tracks delivered something largely comprehensible: sludgy metalcore reminiscent of Cult Leader or early Tusk, which occasionally gets a tad too mathy for its own good. An astute listener might notice the subtle flourishes of saxophone, but even they aren’t all that unusual. But the truth is that these two tracks don’t set the tone as much as they set the stage. Like an accomplished magician, Oxx first need to show you something you can understand, so that you can then be amazed at what they do with it.

The third track, “Birthday Song,” is where the true nature of Oxx’s vision begins to blossom forth. The saxophone, no longer simply an embellishment, instead integrates fully and brilliantly with the other instruments, somehow harmonizing with the dissonant violence of the guitars and making them even more otherworldly and unsettling. “Trespassers” pulls up the album’s reins a bit and opens itself up, allowing space for saxophone and clean guitars to lead fascinating explorations. On “A Multiplicity of Endings,” the album rips apart at the seams, dissolving into pure cacophony. Oxx just keep pulling more and more tricks out of their sleeves, and each one is more stunning and enigmatic than the last. Finally, the title track brings all those tricks together, condensing them into a perfect six-minute capstone. Like its title and cover, the album leaves its audience completely mystified as to what they’ve just experienced, yet captivated nonetheless.



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user ratings (13)
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
JohnnyoftheWell
Contributing Reviewer
August 26th 2019


18932 Comments


This sounds interesting and short & sweet, defo intrigued. Will check tomorrow

Digging: Ben Howard - I Forget Where We Were

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
August 26th 2019


10124 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

The jazzy rhythms on this are crazy. I stand by my sound-off.



Good review my man!

clavier
Staff Reviewer
August 26th 2019


1077 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

did you say jazz *and* sludgy metalcore? will check asap

Digging: Vi Som Alskade Varandra Sa Mycket - Det Onda. Det Goda. Det Vackra. Det Fula.

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
August 26th 2019


10925 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

did you say jazz *and* sludgy metalcore? will check asap





that's how he summoned you here!

clavier
Staff Reviewer
August 26th 2019


1077 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

it is true that any mention of jazz and metalcore together will never fail to summon me (clock the dig)

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
August 26th 2019


10925 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

is witchcraft, witchcraft I tellz you.

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
August 26th 2019


17256 Comments


"jazz *and* sludgy metalcore"

I'm triggered.



Digging: Common Holly - When I say to you Black Lightning

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
August 26th 2019


10124 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Got no choice but to listen at that point

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
August 26th 2019


8531 Comments


Nice to see this reviewed, an albumful of paranoia.

mindleviticus
August 26th 2019


10048 Comments


LOL at the album title.

great stuff though

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
August 26th 2019


10124 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Album is shorter than its title tbh

hesperus
Contributing Reviewer
August 26th 2019


1136 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

lol, i thought about making that joke in the review but there wasn’t a place for it

Relinquished
August 27th 2019


42622 Comments


well... you rec'd TUSK

i'm so sold

Ambrosian
August 27th 2019


154 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Damn this is spicy

Tranqyl
August 27th 2019


335 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This just snuck up from nowhere and dropped some of the best mathcore of the year so far.

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
August 28th 2019


10124 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

This is some serious mathy business for sure

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
August 28th 2019


10925 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Tranqyl more or less just summarised this.



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