Jim White and George Xylouris have been friends since Jim's early days in
Dirty Three. Their musical connection goes back to then and led them to start
Xylouris White in 2013. Since then, they have released three albums and
been touring the world. The Sisypheans is their fourth release.
Jim on The Sisypheans:
"As George Xylouris and I traveled around these last five years, we found
ourselves talking about Sisyphus. George had a theory about Sisyphus, con-
demned to climb that hill with that rock forever. George saw him carrying the
rock in different ways, in his left hand, behind his back, pushing it with his
head while crawling and noticing each journey the seasons changing, the grass
and the insects. The meaning was clear and for George it fit with playing the
popular Cretan song "Proto Hanoti" many turns each day for his life and dis-
covering it new each time . . . I found it fit in with a long held set of thoughts I'd
had, that if one concentrated activity and thought enough on one thing it would
expand and be a whole world. It sounded like the same idea and also with the
idea of first principles, for it to be new each time: that is our job as musicians.
We would talk about this as we traveled playing music. One day a waitress
heard us talking, and she asked if we knew the Camus essay about Sisyphus.
We didn't, but I got it in English and then we found it in Greek and it fit too.
When we were playing in Louisville and working on Black Peak, we stayed at
a house and saw the artwork you see on the cover, by Elsa Hansen
Oldham . . .We'd finished the circular trilogy of Goats, Black Peak, and
Mother and we found ourselves making -. What we do leads us to who we are,