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WIXIW

4.6 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Audio CD, June 5, 2012
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Editorial Reviews

Liars have returned with their sixth studio album and follow-up
to 2010 s critically lauded Sisterworld. WIXIW was recorded in
LA and self-produced by the band with additional production
from Mute founder Daniel Miller and mixed by Tom Biller. The
band worked more collaboratively than on previous recordings
and began when frontman Angus Andrew and bassist Aaron
Hemphill moved into an isolated cabin in the mountains to
begin writing.
The album is simultaneously the most accessible and the most
challenging release from this iconoclastic band - it is both a
summation of Liars work up to now, and a complete break
from anything they have done previously.
As Angus jokes, If we aren t confusing people, it s not us. If
we aren t confusing ourselves with what we do, then we ve
failed.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 5, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Mute
  • ASIN: B007WFQZF0
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #179,299 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a very consistent, very accomplished album. It's smooth, and that, not the obvious move to electronica, may be the biggest difference between WIXIW and earlier Liars albums. Even where the beats sound mechanical and could be abrasive -- on the Autechre side of things -- they're not. There is a certain continuity from Sisterworld to WIXIW, a continuity of attitude and ambience, the sense of living in a vast, dark, urban landscape that is vaguely menacing.

Some have said it's all textures rather than hits, and while I agree there are probably no hits, I think this overlooks the strong beats and melodies found throughout. It may not be a dance album, but it certainly lends itself to dance remixes.

Within the universe of smooth electronica, there is a fascinating diversity across the eleven tracks. One common element, though, is the falsetto crooning vocals. This is the one thing that doesn't always hit me quite right, but it does assist in creating the album's stylistic coherence.

I disagree with those who say this album is more adventurous and experimental than the last two. It may be adventurous for the Liars to tackle a type of music they haven't played before, but it doesn't sound all that radical to the listener, not if you've heard electronica over the years. In fact, I think this is the Liars' most accessible album.

WIXIW is not as abrasive as Liars (2007) or Sisterworld (2010), and I don't think it's a masterpiece on the level of Sisterworld (see my review). It's not as ambitious -- it's not really *about* anything, other than relationships. (WIXIW, it turns out, is pronounced "wish you.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
You'll either love it or hate it which is probably true for all Liars albums, they are far from melodic mainstream and are not easily described by any musical style. This one has some smooth electronic beats and is a bit more accessible.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I first reviewed this album three months ago, and it never quite left me alone. Accordingly, I've changed my review from 4 stars to 5, and I've edited the below details:

Liars is a group that is more concerned with creating interesting textures of sound rather than radio-ready hits. The group's previous catalog reflects a band that is conscious about each album's sound; constantly changing and tinkering with their sound, the group is known for drastic shifts in music between releases. WIXIW (pronounced "Wish You") is no exception as it finds the band changing direction once again. This time, the group has found themselves in a dark avant-garde electronic-dance experiment.

WIXIW sounds almost like a logical extension of Radiohead's KID A. The album is maintained by melancholy, haunting synthesizers and offbeat rhythms. Like past releases, the value of Liars' music lies in the depth of the album. Each play of the album will open and unlock previously unattended sounds, shifts, and textures; that's what they're made for. These albums are made to be poured over and explored. The discordant, atonal, and asynchronous touches of the album really pay off on repeated listens. The lead single, "No. 1 Against the Rush" isn't immediate, but it's a song that will stay with you long after its running time. "His and Mine Sensations," centers around a vocal line whose delivery is very much beautiful, dark, and a bit creepy; in a way, this line sums up the entire album. "Ring on Every Finger" centers around a very unconventional loop, but the song, centering around near-tribal percussion is unforgettable. Much of WIXIW is layered with dark samples and instrumentation, making this album less accessible to new listeners than previous releases.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
First things first, I think this album is wonderful. Having listened to the Liars previous work, the general ambiance and sound from this album was rather unexpected (but, what else can you expect from Liars?). It starts out with "The Exact Colour of Doubt," which is oddly beautiful, and comforting, kind of dropping one into a relaxed lull before dramatically shifting into "Octagon," which is a song filled with so much tension that it makes me want to crawl out of my skin.

From there it goes into "No. 1 Against the Rush", which is relaxed enough to put you, once again, into kind of lull, with a repetitious, rather relaxed rhythm; however, the overlapping synthesizers create a wonderfully discomforting ambiance, which is really what the album is rife with. From there it follows that same basic pattern: Relaxed beat, with overlaying instruments creating a constant feeling of discomfort and rising tension to the point where it makes your skin crawl.

Only complaints; the title track, "Wixiw", which sits in the exact middle of the album is very loud, abrasive and out of place with the rest of the album. It has a kind of sonic shift half way through the song, which I would praise if the shift reflected the sound of the album either preceding or proceeding the song, but it doesn't. It's simply out of place. The songs preceding "Wixiw" are all calm with rising tension. The songs proceeding "Wixiw" start off more tense, but kind of ease off, becoming more fun to listen to. "Wixiw" is just nonstop intensity, without the proper feeling of climax.

Also, I wix the track listing, "Who is the Hunter" and "Brats" were switched around. Most of the album is very, very electronic, but the ending track, "Annual Moon Words" is organic.
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