The xx: I See You

the xxThe xx
I See You
(Young Turks)

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The xx blossom on their beautiful and sonically intriguing third album I See You.

“Dangerous” is the perfect intro and their liveliest sounding track to date. Jamie xx weaves intricate and upbeat percussive patterns while vocalist and guitarist, Romy Madley Croft delivers some of her brightest sounding vocals.

“Say Something Loving” can be summed up with the line “I just don’t remember the thrill of affection.” This track takes listeners on a journey as Croft and bassist/vocalist, Oliver Sim tackle unflattering emotions and uncertainty head on. The lyrics chart the internal struggle from embarrassment (“Am I too needy? Am I too eager?”) to casting it all aside and proclaiming “all my hesitations are fading.”

The expansive “Performance” is a throwback to The xx’s debut. Its depth rests in its echoing guitar lines and soft vocals. The performance that Croft sings of is one used to mask a broken heart. Such sad and poetic lyrics make this track haunting and relatable with resonant honesty.

“On Hold” is the obvious choice for a single. It’s poppy, catchy, and danceable, but still lyrically poignant. “Test Me” hangs in the air with its directness. Here Croft and Sim threaten to leave a relationship that’s turning sour. Sadness and passive frustration soon become confident defiance.

“Test Me” is another throwback to the distinct minimal sound of their debut album. I See You sees The xx growing as musicians, bravely venturing away from their signature darkness and minimalism, but not losing the artistry that makes them unique.

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About Samantha Blackwood

Hi, I'm a Canadian human with an undying love for live music and the works of dead writers. I write music reviews, book reviews, random literature related musings, short fiction, and more.
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