For better or worse Xenon will go down as the band that didn’t make it. The New Jersey based metal band seemed poised right on the very brink of stardom in the 1980’s. Yet for some reason their break never came. They definitely had the talent, the songs and a large local fan following. Perhaps it was bad timing or just record company politics, but it never happened for Xenon.
As the 1980’s rolled on the band continued playing live shows but remained unsigned. They wisely opted to self fiance their debut album, America’s New Design. Released in 1989 the album reportedly sold 20,000 copies. Those numbers caught the attention of some in the record industry. Yet once again, perhaps due to timing or unforseen misfortune, the band remained unsigned.
Their debut album, America’s New Design, was far superior to many of the albums that were released by major label acts at that time. Unfortunately high quality music is not always the barometer in the music business. There were far to many bands with the look, yet lacked solid songs or real talent. Xenon was a prime time band with highly talented musicians and songwriters. Add to all of that the band’s determination and it should have been a sure-fire formula for success. Yet it never happened for Xenon.
All of these years later and their debut CD still holds up. It may be 2017 but good quality music never has an expiration date. Much of the metal of that time now sounds a bit dated. America’s New Design was an exceptional album in 1989 and it still is in 2017. This is high quality metal music that deserves to be heard.