The XX


SXSW Records

The XX

XX (Young Turks/XL)

Is it raining where you are too? Is there one too many toothbrushes sitting forlornly by your bathroom sink, bristling with minty sad memories? Are you going to throw it away, or use it as a boot-scrubber, a once fine, now masochistic flagellant with which to feebly scrape away what once was and now, suddenly, isn't? Don't bother. You'll never get the taste of him/her out of your head that way. Best to pour yourself a pint of bitterness and let the lonely, lovely languor of London dreampop trio the XX lull you into blissful unconsciousness. Spare, swirling keyboards and gently urgent guitar pluckings anchor this minimalist masterpiece, allowing Romy Madley Croft's plaintive, laudanumlike vocals to tentatively soar above the albumwide ache that is her and Oliver Sim's (e)vocation. "Crystalised," awash in subacute background howls, is the best track Portishead never recorded. Sometimes, regret can be a beautiful thing. (Thu., 1am, Mohawk Patio; Fri., 12:30am, Central Presbyterian Church.)


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