On Hold

I’ve got more and more out of The Xx as time has gone on. At first I thought they were impressive but easier to admire than to love. That’s changed over the years since their debut and its follow up, even more so after Jamie Xx’s solo album from last year. News came out on Friday that their third album will be released in January and in advance of it comes a single called On Hold.

The opening section with Romy and Oliver trading lines starts out sounding like an 80s power ballad but stick with it. The synth stabs coming in forty seconds and then the repetitive vocal sample (Hall and Oates) at fifty seconds take it elsewhere, into higher places.

While I’m in the Xx zone this Jamie Xx edit of Sunset off second album Coexist is a wonderful bass and kick drum led thing of beauty. The repeated guitar line building up to Romy’s vocal drop is magnificent use of tension and release and the end section is pretty amazing too.

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