Born in 1989 in ZÃ¼rich, Switzerland. Based in south-eastern Australia (Melbourne & Hobart) since 1995, they are embraced by Macedonians, Roma, Florinians, Greeks, Turks, Kurds, Kosovans, and the wider Australian community.
Xenos, known by connoisseurs around the globe, plays evocative & electrifying music of the Balkan Roma (Gypsies), the modern urban music of that region. Twin sisters Anne & Lee Hildyard master the vocal sounds that are such a feature of this music. Stunning saxophone and traditional instruments - bagpipe and zurna - transport the listeners and dancers to a celebration of modern Rom culture.
XENOS' sound exemplifies contemporary urban Balkan music, particularly the wild wedding music of Macedonia and Bulgaria, which combines ancient traditional instruments with Gypsy, Turkish, and electric Western influences. Driven by the haunting vocals of Anne & Lee singing in Romani, XENOS' music is inspired and original, yet rooted in tradition, and sealed with the Gypsy hallmark of the mane or taksim, the solo improvisation also found in Near Eastern music.
Saxophone, gaida, tulum, vocals, zurna, clarinet, electric guitar, laouto, fretless bass, cumbus, davul, defi, bongos, ud
Review of Tutti Frutti by Kim Burton for Songlines magazine (U.K.):
As the world gets smaller (or at least people and things move around it faster and more widely), then it becomes easier to gain a knowledge of other people's art and culture. And as a result, to explore it as a working musician. Sometimes with the best will in the world all that results is a quick (un)guided tour through a few exotic tunes and gestures. Sometimes, as here, what turns up is a triumph. Australian-based Xenos, led by twin sisters Anne and Lee Hildyard, have chosen to concentrate on the electrifying music of the Roma of the Balkans, a music that is still rarely known in its original form. All the musicians in the core of this group (they're joined on this disc by guests) have obviously spent a lot of time listening, learning and practising. Anne Hildyard's saxophone is particularly impressive, and both sisters have mastered the vocal sounds and phrasing that are such a feature of this music. A special mention should go to Philip Griffin, who is the only non-local guitarist I have ever heard to have grasped the intricate mix of twang and strum that drives the song and dance along. This is quite splendid, energetic and powerful, and a credit both to the musicians and their collaborators and informants. More, please!
Check out the artist's website:
1. UÅ¡ti UÅ¡ti Baba
2. Geliyor DÃ¼gÃ¼n Alayi
4. Posadila Baba
6. Tutti Frutti
7. Sadila Ganka
8. O Dive Nakela
9. Romski Gaida
11. Radka Piratka
12. Mootown Zurna
13. Dedo Mili Zlatni
14. Di Di