Master guitar soloist Xander Demos puts his best shred forward!
Some modern rock/metal bands seem to throw everything and the kitchen sink into their music. Something that may be overlooked in their zeal is the guitar solo: sometimes short, sometimes long and meandering, but both give space in the track where someone can truly shine. Shred guitarist Xander Demos doesn’t overlook this and hearing him play reminded me of what other bands sometimes gloss over.
Fronting his own band XDB and performing in various tribute bands, he’s certainly an adaptable busy guy. I checked out the songs on the XDB Reverbnation page and certainly enjoyed what I heard: songs that harken to some of the giants of rock and metal, and instrumental tracks that allow the shredding to truly shine.
Dancing Through Daggers features frenetic fingering accompanied by clear and epic vocals that set this song up as a great partner to fantastic mental scenes. Under a Darkened Sky is home to a fast solo that rises and falls in tone and tempo but grabs the ear and won’t let it go. Boys of Summer has a grittier sound than the others, the song interspersed with solo flourishes that grow in duration and intricacy each time they occur. I enjoyed these songs, the lyrics painted pictures and the sounds and rhythms were catchy to the ear. Where Xander really shines in my opinion however, is the instrumental tracks.
White Knuckle Driving has a grainy sound that alternates between bass segments of relative calm and fast fingering solos that increase the pace once more. I loved the periods of peace where things breathe before being launched back into the soloing. If you keep the title of the track in mind, it’s easy to imagine a souped up Mustang crunching and shaking as it turns suicide bends, the quiet parts of the song accompanying when the driver momentarily loses control, the frantic parts giving a soundtrack to when control is regained once more.
Woodshed Sonata is another purely instrumental track. It begins with the sound-byte “Grab some wood there bub!” before the listener hears a deeper, heavier sound than the previous tracks: pounding drums and lower notes accompanied by periods of blistering soloing. I feel these instrumental tracks truly let the listener appreciate the finger work put into this kind of track, unhampered by vocals or other distractions.
Check out Xander Demo’s Reverbnation page below!