Feature

The xx: xx

There is “something seductively special” about xx's simple sound.

(Young Turks)

****

It’s surprising that a band with such a simple sound has ­produced “one of 2009’s most unique debuts,” said Emily Mackay in New Musical Express. The xx are four 20-year-olds from south London whose instrumentation (guitars, bass, and synth and drum sounds) is as basic as any band’s out there. Yet there is “something seductively special” about the music they make, said Sarah Boden in the London Observer. The xx crafts “languid, sparsely arranged love songs” that seem strangely comforting. The soft, smoky boy/girl duets of Oliver Sim and Romy Madley Croft lead the slow dance; their exchanges lend the album an intimate tension on such tracks as “Crystalised” and “Islands.” Every song is “fully formed and thoughtful,” said Andrew Gaerig in Pitchforkmedia.com. Quiet, furtive, and incredibly nuanced, xx is the “product of a new band thinking a lot harder about topics—sex, composition, volume—than we are ­accustomed to new bands thinking.”

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