Review | pioniX “Xtory -Sho-“


pioniX keep things interesting with their 2nd entry in the Neo X Lied series, Xtory -Sho-.

infinit0 consists of Rei Sukigawa (CV: Hinata Tadokoro) and Roa Mikaze (CV: Mizuki Chiba). The duo is signed with the fictional label, Tsukipro.

TOBARI is a rock duo comprised of Shio Amagi (CV: Yoshiki Nakajima) and Kuroi Hashiba (CV: Tetsuei Sumiya). The duo is signed to the fictional label, SUNPRO (home to the pop-rock duo, ZIX).

infinit0 and TOBARI joined hands and will work as a group for the on-going Neo X Lied series as pioniX.

Xtory -Sho- is scheduled to be released on 25/12/2020, available in regular edition.

The cover art is the following (featuring TOBARI’s Shio Amagi):

Title: Xtory -Sho-
Release date: 25/12/2020
Label: Movic
Genre: Rock


1 - doubt
2 - DRAMA「development -承-」
3 - doubt -off vocal-

Track analysis:

1 – doubt

A delicate, distant piano melody serves as the opening for “doubt” however, after that gentle intro, there’s nothing gentle about this song.

doubt is a pretty intense and powerful rock song that focuses on loud drums, a reverberating bass line and shredding guitar riffs. Everything about this instrumental is hot-blooded and robust.

The verses have a comfortable tempo, being slower paced than pioniX’s debut song SHINE FOR US.

I particularly love the drums work on this track. The toms are used in more than just fills, being a big part of the groove and power in the chorus and parts of the verses.

The bass drum and snare go bonkers for this song, following a pretty tricky rhythm, being the perfect core for this instrumental.

On the vocal end, pioniX goes for a masterful performance. In their individual parts, each member showcases their skills – with a lot of flair in the mix – but its when they are performing as a group in the chorus that you can notice their power.

The group has their harmony game in top form and can we talk about that collective falsetto in the chorus?

Although the vocals were already hinting at a part to release all the tension in the track – could have been using vibrato or falsetto -, it was still surprising to find the whole group tackling falsetto and sounding heavenly good at it.

All in all, pioniX keep on impressing with their music and Xtory -Sho- is no exception. Robust rock track with more depth in the instrumental than what I expected as well as passionate performances on top.

pioniX keep things interesting with their 2nd entry in the Neo X Lied series.

Xtory -Sho- is available for purchase at CDJAPAN.

Xtory -Sho- / pioniX
The Hand That Feeds HQ founder and music reviewer writing about Japanese music since 2010. Also, the only person managing everything The Hand That Feeds HQ related. In 2011, I stumbled upon Mamoru Miyano's "Orpheus". Since then I have been writing about male seiyuu music. You may find me writing almost essays whenever music is really good (not limited to, but it happens a lot with Soma Saito's music). I also host the male seiyuu-centric podcast, SEIYUU LOUNGE (see Spotify link in this profile).