Slimming down his operation, Catalan drummer runs for raw nerve to tap into the cerebral.
This Berklee graduate made quite a stir when his quintet had started producing well-ordered noise, yet when it came to “Resolution,” Reija’s claim to the global conquest, Xavi decided to throw it all into the nowhere-to-hide format of trio. Roping in his old colleagues, guitarist Dusan Jevtovic and bassist Bernat Hernández, who recently worked on the former’s "Am I Walking Wrong", the drummer secured telepathic interaction only to give an unhinged edge to the likes of opener “Flying To Nowhere.” There, the serrated axe chops the ever-shifting rhythm with little regard for the tune coming from the surfaces the main man hits, but it’s the bottom-end five-string slalom that zooms in on “Macroscope” to stick a melody in its roaring bowels. Coming from the same place, its beating heart produces a motorik beat within the 10 minutes of “Dreamer,” while the other two instruments rock wildly and with much gusto as they also do for a weird harmonizing in “Pop Song For You” – moving as far from the chart-busting conventionality as it gets.
On the other end of emotional spectrum “The Land Of The Sirenians” rolls out a sweet, dynamically swelling melancholy, and “Shadow Dance” unhurriedly waltzes into fusion. There’s a lot of small details to uncover and enjoy, such as a folky electronic undertow under the title track’s punchy drone or basically all the record’s elements gathered in “Gravity” that emerges close to the end of the album like its long-overdue overture. Still, the finale dawns in “Welcome To The End” wherein the playing does the talking, and though it’s impossible to get its message at the first spin, it somehow prompts a repeating listening. Quite a resolution in every meaning of the word – musical and what not.