The past week was released the first single of The xx in four years. And the reception for this song was incredible, everybody were talking about it, but… it’s really a song by The xx?
The xx is a British band formed in 2005 by Romy Madley Croft, Oliver Sim and Jamie Smith aka Jamie xx. Their first and homonym album was released in 2009 receiving not only the praise of the critic, also the album debut won the famous Mercury Prize, using an style melancholic, lyrics a little bit depressing and with a mix of sounds mostly guitar and beats with spaces of silence. Since then, The xx released a second album called Coexist, where the sound of the band changed, incorporating the expertise of Jamie xx as DJ. Between the two albums, Jamie xx reworked the album of Gil Scott Heron in a great way and after Coexist release a solo album called “In Colour”, where he include a pair of songs with his mates of The xx, Romy and Oliver, songs which have been created for the third album by The xx: “Stranger in a Room” and “Loud Places”.
This single of the upcoming album of The xx, starts with the characteristic sound of The xx first album, but suddenly the song became as a Jamie xx song: the sound is more like for a dance club, and is leaving the characteristic sound of the group, the innovative sound that make them win the Mercury Prize. Even, seems a song by Jamie xx ft. Romy and Oliver, cause the characteristic guitar sound of Romy is almost imperceptible, and the Oliver’s bass is only supporting the Jamie’s beats. Seems that “Stranger in a Room” is more The xx than “Hold On”.
So… What we can expect from The xx’s new album? The new album will be successful but will be not the original sound of The xx, it will be more like a third album of Jamie xx Ft. Romy and Oliver. Theirs songs will be played in the dance clubs, but will not represent the feelings of melancholy that represent, in their moment, the first album of The xx.
The talent of Jamie xx is undeniable, but his ability as DJ is different of The xx. If the direction of the group keep been more like Jamie xx, will leave the essence of what we love from The xx.
Finally, you can listen “On Hold” in this link: