xoxo EXTREME Is Ready

I was lamenting the other day (to myself, but very, very loudly) that the first month of the new year hasn’t really had any immediate Of the Year contenders. Necroma’s single is great, of course, but has no MV, and there have been precious few releases, period, let alone any that would make you jump up and holler out of the sheer joy of hearing something great.

Then along came xoxo EXTREME with their first-ever MV, and I’ll be damned if it didn’t leave me a little slack-jawed.


Sharing a director with Cinema and Boy CQ, of course

What is this prog-jazz-fusion madness? Gods, what a glorious song. Silly me thought it was out of tricks, and then that violin jumped in, too. Such a beautiful composition. I’ve been making people listen to it for 24 hours, and I don’t plan on stopping.

I hope this is xoxo EXTREME’s “3WD” moment. There are a lot of cool, artsy projects in the underground, but xoxo’s carved out this indelible spot — prog rock idols! — that really is unique, and fully capable of reaching well beyond the confines of idol audiences to connect with people who are down with music, period. I often say that a group has crossover appeal, but that’s because I want people looking at idol as another way of doing whatever; speaking realistically, once you’re down in the bowels of idol, there are only a handful of acts that are operating on a different plane from their peers — Dots, HAMIDASYSTEM, Kouteca, etc. — and they sometimes not only stick out, but grow and catch on beyond idol pretty quickly. I’d love to see that now for xoxo EXTREME.

That this is their first MV really speaks volumes about that potential, you know? They’ve been banging out releases for a couple of years (and go to their Bandcamp right now and download some stuff), but never any video other than live. And this is pro-style work, too, clearly aiming at overall aesthetic impressions over just “cute girls and catchy tunes” like … like pretty much 90 percent of idol stuff. It’s the kind of song-and-MV combo that you put together when you’re confident that the investment can work out, and that this is just the beginning. To return to Task have Fun for a minute, that was “3WD”; the group had a history and felt like they had what was necessary, but then they got a great MV and an impossibly catchy song, took that to TIF and pretty much haven’t looked back.

“rinne” isn’t as stupidly infectious, but do what I’ve been doing — send the link to the MV to every person you know, put it on Facebook, put in on LinkedIn, for heaven’s sake, and say, you should listen to this, friends, because it is really good music and you can even buy other tracks from this group, and maybe you should get into more idols like (now provide a list that corresponds to that person’s tastes). In fact, the next person that I’m going to bother with this is Alex, who needs no convincing when it comes to cool idol projects, but still, dude’s got a whole other kind of reach that I don’t.

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