The day before the release of I See You, the band teased their fans hourly with a Facebook live stream of one of their new songs; not only was this ingenious and creative marketing, but it brought together a community of fans who were able to share their excitement together.
There is no better way to describe The xx’s new album than through their own words: “a celebration of our friendship, life and love”. The band’s energy and chemistry shines through the entirety of the album. They have returned with a slightly more electro tone, perhaps due to Jamie xx’s solo album’s influence, however the guitar element has remained creating the harmonious, tessellating and unique sound that we know and love.
Honestly, when The xx released ‘On Hold’ back in November, I couldn’t see how the rest of the album could possibly live up to it, as it soon became one of the greatest indie releases of 2016. Whereas ‘On Hold’ certainly remains the heart of the album, songs like ‘Dangerous’ and ‘Lips’ convey the same energy, giving life to the album. But if you’re feeling nostalgic, ‘Brave For You’ and ‘Performance’‘s slowed down melody and emphasis on Romy’s vocals are extremely reminiscent of XX and Coexist. My only regret is that it wasn’t longer. I See You only has 10 tracks and the album is just under 40 minutes long; it is clear that quality was prioritised over quantity but after five years of absence the fans need more.
The xx have delivered again. I See You is a truly original album, an example of pure musical bliss. Let’s hope we don’t have to wait another 5 years for the next one. Until then we still have the I See You remixes to look forward to.