Lucigen, a fuzz rock quartet from Morton, IL, plays a patented mix of martial industrial beats, grunge riffs, and somnambulist ambient soundscapes. Xylomancy, Lucigen's latest release, operates as the band's mission statement of sorts. Taking roughly six months to finish, and engineered by the band themselves, Xylomancy finds Lucigen attempting to explode any boundaries concerning their uniformity of sound. Stomping power chords, buzzing bass, hard-hitting choruses, and distorted, off-kilter grooves provide a dizzying backdrop while refined melody or a catchy vocal hook offsets the band's dissonance and draws the listener in. Ryan Martin, from The Paper Dolls, says 'this album is impossible not to enjoy on at least some level.' Emerging in the spring of 1996, the original trio of Murray, Ousley, and bassist Jesse Oliver began playing local clubs and parties. Later that year, Lucigen released Sigma Seven, a demo cassette peppered with fifteen lo-fi, noise-pop songs. Lucigen/Dying Breed, a split demo cassette with now-defunct band Dying Breed, was released in the summer of 1997 and featured seven Lucigen songs showcasing a darker, sample-heavy atmosphere. July 31, 1998, marked the release of Lucigen's first CD, Blue, Grey, Black and Empty. 'This could be the first psycho/grunge/thrash/rock opera,' raved the Raging Smolder Music Review. Indeed, the record was conceptual in nature, as it combined sappy love songs, abrasive grunge, and nightmarish sound collages, all presented with a documentary-style ennui. 'We were toying with the idea of mood disorders,' intones singer/drummer Brandon Ousley. 'The approach was to get some cool songs, put them in an enjoyable order, and then spill lengthy chunks of noise in all the wrong places.' The band recruited Dave Webb, replacing Oliver on bass, in 1999 and released Painted Smile. Narrated by a fuse of squalling android guitar, searing bass, agile drumming, and piercing vocal tantrums, Painted Smile's angst-ridden lyrics and childish nuances lead the listener down an adventurous and ultimately disconcerting path. Peoria's The Paranorm would hail the record for it's 'totally unique sound, and excellent example of rampage rock in the progressive style.' Lucigen is currently preparing an extensive tour of the Midwest in support of Xylomancy. The band is expected to perform their hectic tier of songs and stage antics throughout the spring of 2002.
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