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Experimental rockers Xiu Xiu bring kitchen-sink instrumentation to town



In the world of Xiu Xiu (pronounced "shoe-shoe"), quick blasts of electronic noise and dissonance clash with kitchen-sink folk " the only constant being the committed intensity of James Stewart's lead vocals. He's not a singer, exactly, but a confessional raw-nerve vocalist fronting a group emotionally reminiscent of Plastic Ono Band, although the band is often compared to Joy Division and The Cure.

The band will play The Conservatory tonight with Kill Rock Stars labelmates Thao with the Get Down Stay Down.

"We make it out there (to The Conservatory) pretty consistently," Stewart said. "We like it there."

The newest Xiu Xiu disc, "Women as Lovers," is strangely compelling, featuring a gotta-laugh-to-keep-from-crying cover of the Queen and David Bowie song "Under Pressure." The album is earning praise for its accessibility, which should bode well for Conservatory audiences.

"We're still a four-piece, and the touring band are the same people who worked on the record," Stewart said.

On the arsenal of instruments the band uses, Stewart hinted that there is a little streamlining in the live show.

"I'm mostly playing guitar and percussion," he said.  

Oklahoma City's own spacey Magnificent Bird will kick off the diverse triple bill. "Tory Troutman

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