Monday, 16 July 2012

Track Review: The XX - Angels

Three years ago, The XX released their debut album. Three fucking years it's taken them.. Mind my language, ok. Anyway... They have their critics, and they also have their dedicated fanbase. Their debut album is there to be seen, and it's simplicity cannot be argued. With this comes the problem of a follow-up album. It needs to be different, yet keep the main basic ingredients. The XX are just the basic ingredients, so they just need something more and unique rather than the lazy and in my opinion, dull vocals/guitar work. Jamie XX is a brilliant producer. He's becoming recognized and has put his name towards many successful projects since releasing XX back in 2009. 

'Angels' will be the first track on the bands sophomore album, it's also going to be the first single.. Clearly. 'Intro' was a magnificent opener on the bands debut album. Many thought it was in fact the best track on the album, myself included. Angels is slightly different, however technically the same. The whole backbone of The XX is Jamie's drum machine. This piece of equipment is non-existent here. His contribution is the production, the percussion and the hypnotic bass. The 'new era' of The XX starts off with a short, cute and quirky single with Remy at her strongest. 

A majestic atmosphere surrounds the room. Remy delivers a quiet and quality vocal. Her refrain, "love, love, love", is simple, yet bold. Everything about this track is minimal and simple, nonetheless it manages to sound bold and full. It's quite extraordinary to listen to this different structure and quietness, compared to the more beat heavy, faster and unfulfilled tracks on their debut album. Oliver gives all the bass he can possibly give on top of Remy's characteristic guitar. Drenched in reverb as per usual, but the effect is necessary.

People want to hear a great sophomore album. This is the first track on the album, and the mood has been set nicely. The direction cannot be understood after one track has been released. As tracks go, this is rather nice... It's peaceful, steady and relaxing. More please.