“…the way she sings, coupled with the loose, stepping bass line, betrays someone who's totally at home in her skin. Hearing her stretch and bend her words is as satisfying as watching someone with really defined back muscles take a moment to close their eyes and roll their shoulders. "Lonely Lover" says, "Not today, Satan!" It has the power to ward him off, too.” – Pitchfork on “Lonely Lover”

“The Brooklyn artist truly crosses borders with her multi-genre-hyphenate instrumental textures beneath Billie Holiday-esque croons.” – SPIN Magazine



“She's triumphed unambiguously: Magic Trix is a startling lightning bolt of a record.” – Pitchfork (7.8)

Following the powerful reception to Xenia Rubinos’ brilliantly original “Lonely Lover” single (premiered at SPIN) and all too knowing video (this time at Pitchfork), the equally striking second track from her upcoming ANTI- debut, Black Terry Cat, lands today with FACT.


Xenia says of the track, one of Black Terry Cat’s undoubted highlights: “This song was born a couple of years ago when I returned home to New York from a trip visiting my father in Florida. He was elderly and with his health failing, I became his guardian and caregiver. I'd go there every month to spend time with him, do groceries, coordinate the home aids, take him to appointments and just try to lift his spirits. The minute I got home, this piano part and vocal melody just flooded out of me. It was really strong and kind of unruly, it felt very physical spilling from my insides like I was turning inside out. There's a great deal of wanting, of wishing in this song - we're telling each other what we want to hear, promising each other we'll live forever.”


She goes on to say that she’d heard that “when you look up at the night's sky it's possible that some of the stars you see shining have already died, we just see them as they were in the past. I imagined this true sky shining full of black stars.”


There is also a political edge to the track of which she states that “around that time I, along with many other Americans, was an angry and confused spectator of the Michael Brown case which felt like a giant tear in some very real wounds in our country. I was thinking of all those who've lost loved ones to violence and circumstances that seem and maybe are out of our control. Thinking of the words BLACK, STARS, GHETTO, QUIERO (which sounds a lot like ghetto and can mean both want and love). This song is raw and emotional, I tried to create space inside it so people can just come in and find their own meanings or just be.”


Xenia’s second record, full of more brilliant, diverse music, arrives in stores June 3rd. With a unique and soulful sound that The New Yorker described as a “rhythmically fierce, vocally generous music that slips through the net of any known genre,” Rubinos uses her powerful voice to traverse an array of genres from R&B to Hip-Hop to jazz and beyond, all of it delivered with a New York punk-funk abandon.


As Rubinos explains, “Black Terry Cat is a #browngirlmagic carpet ride powered by deep pocket backbeats and funky bass lines. "Lonely Lover" is the first full song I finished for the album - it was a real breakthrough where I felt like I'd created my own sound, and became kind of my mantra for making the rest of the album. I was listening to a lot of R&B, hip hop, rap, digging into black culture in America as well as the Afro Latin diaspora which I'm a part of.”


Rubinos explains the absolutely captivating cover photo of a smiling gap toothed girl with a bow in her hair, “NYC street photographer Joseph Rodriguez's picture of "Girl in Blue Dress" taken in Spanish Harlem in 1988 felt like the perfect soulful hostess for my album. I imagine this girl and the record itself exploring this special mojo where things work in unexpected ways that may be less conventional but are beautiful and captivating.”


The new record finds Rubinos assisted by longtime drummer Marco Buccelli, who produced the album, and Jeremy Loucas as engineer. The three worked an average of 16-17 hours a day for five months to complete the record which got its name from “a giant black scraggly cat” that surprised Rubinos one cold night in Brooklyn.


“With the vocals I got into this spooky romantic zone thinking of singers like Billie Holiday, Judy Garland and the funk of Chaka Khan,” she explains, “I was channeling all those singers but then ended up redoing the vocals on my own in my kitchen because they just weren't feeling honest. So I took a bottle of Aguardiente and started doing vocal takes. I lit papers on fire to get a smokey smell around me and thought that instead of emulating these other high priestesses I should create my own voice and find my own way to say my piece. I'm really proud of the result.”


XENIA RUBINOS – Black Terry Cat – Track Listing:

1.       Romeo - 0:23

2.       Don’t Wanna Be - 4:35

3.       Mexican Chef - 3:49

4.       Black Stars - 3:59

5.       Just Like I - 2:54

6.       Right? - 4:18

7.       5 - 2:07

8.      Lonely Lover - 4:24

9.       Laugh Clown - 4:04

10.   I Won’t Say - 3:26

11.    LL - 0:53

12.    See Them - 5:00

13.    Now Ur Being the Girl - 0:24

14.    How Strange It Is - 3:12

For more information on Xenia Rubinos, visit:






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May 31, 2016 11:12am by Pressparty   Comments (0)

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