The xx – I See You (Deluxe Edition) (2017/2021)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 49:45 minutes | 536 MB | Genre: Alternative, Indie
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Young Turks Recordings
That The XX would not completely knock you out of your shoes and come around the corner with a weird trap album, is already clear long before and at the latest thanks to the released singles “On Hold” and “Say Something Loving”. Because, of course, the third album “I See You” remains with the band’s identity-giving elements: sugar-sweet bass, less ambitious guitars, neck-hair singing and an aesthetic covering of raised eyebrows and black rolling collars.
But the last four years also did not pass without a trace a Romy Madley Croft, Oliver Sim and Jamie Smith. The latter, who as Jamie xx with the album “In Farbe” 2015 felt every music critic and festival-goer in orgasmic raptures, seems to have exerted great influence on the production of the album. The otherwise very serious Londoners seem fresher, more detached, more frightened and more fiddling. On “I See You” you suddenly find cute love songs like “Say Something Loving” and with “Hold On” a driving, breaking number, including a Hall & Oates sample of “I Can’t”, and with “I Dare you” almost lively indiepop and the explanatory announcement “I’m on a different kind of high.
At the same time, we obviously have to deal with more solid and confident musicians who, after the pressure-laden second record, still mainly sing about insecurities in love matters, but do everything right musically. “Replica “is about the fear of being abandoned, but it doesn’t sound weak at all and” A Violent Noise”, a typical ecstatic XX-piece, and the most melodic moment of the record, is reduced in xx-style and poppy elements are encapsulated. Matching the text:”… every blow is a heavy noise”.
This contradiction between fragile poetry and audible perfection makes up the spirit of “I See you”. More ingenious is only the artwork, which shows, matching the title, a silver reflecting background with a punched X. Beautiful and harmonious again the interplay of the singers Romy and Oliver. Nevertheless, especially Romy shines on this record, especially on the songs “Performance”, a rather sad, gentle piece and” Brave For you”, in which she sounds strong and determined. It’s their songs.
Erotic and minimalist, “Lips” recalls the spirit of the first record: “Only you love only your shadow / only your voice / and my soul”. And also a gloomy, satisfying outro (“Test Me”) The xx do not owe the listeners. Testimony: expectations met and exceeded. Fittingly, in the retrospective perhaps die lines of the album opening song “Dangerous” can be interpreted: “If proved to be wrong, shame on me / But you had faith in me / So I will not shy away Should / it fall / become my favorite mistake”.
1. The xx – Dangerous
2. The xx – Say Something Loving
3. The xx – Lips
4. The xx – A Violent Noise
5. The xx – Performance
6. The xx – Replica
7. The xx – Brave For You
8. The xx – On Hold
9. The xx – I Dare You
10. The xx – Test Me
11. The xx – Naive
12. The xx – Seasons Run
13. The xx – Brave For You (Marfa Demo)