Now, I've known Russ and seen Xanthocephalus play for years and often wondered (but never asked) what the name was about. Turns out that Xanthocephalus is a genus of bird that there has only one species under it's umbrella, the Yellow-headed blackbird (academically speaking, the "Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus"). The final line of the wikipedia entry for this bird mentions its song "resembles the grating of a rusty hinge". I dug deeper, and goddamn, the little guy sounds, well, just like a creaky gate. This set off a series of youtube k-holes getting lost in all those vids of the birds that impossibly mimic car alarms and chainsaws, or that one parking lot door that undeniably runs down some serious Miles Davis voodoo. Regardless, this seems an apt metaphor for a similar alchemy-magic Russ must channel to coax his living sounds from the chaotic array of sound-tools lying motionless in front of him.
"Syntonic Reasoning" undeniably finds Russ delving even further down the rabbithole, finding unlikely inspiration from vector environments, coordinate models, and terse programming languages - exploring the organic relationship between art and algorithm. Emphasis on control flows, procedure, and recursion defiantly mesh to unlock more complex shapes conjured through the same wizardry we've witnessed across Russ's diverse catalog on Tranquility Tapes, Ghetto Naturalist Series, and Skell Records, to name but a few.