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The xx – Coexist album review

Three years after their hit debut album, The xx’s latest release renews your opportunity to plunge into your realm of deep, dark, and mixed emotions.

Hailing from the U.K, band members Romy Madley Croft and Oliver Sim met as students at London’s Elliott School and began performing in 2005. The following year, they added member Jamie Smith to the group. Their self-produced debut album xx, released in 2009, met with high acclaim, ranking amongst the top 10 on Rolling Stone and NME’s “best of the year” lists. After extensive touring, TV shows and media airings, the album went on to earn the Barclaycard Mercury Prize in 2010 and was soon certified platinum. Drawing from a variety of influences such as pop, post-punk, R&B and EDM, theirs is an intensely morose, airy sound through which to channel your own painfully delightful heartbreak.

The xx’s second album Coexist was released on September 11th 2012 by Young Turks, with a deluxe vinyl LP release date of September 25th 2012. The dreamy, acoustic “Angels” and the ambient-entrancing “Chained” were released as the album’s first two singles. “Fiction” is a keenly moving ode to longing while “Reunion”‘s dreamy steel drums and subsequent EDM vibe renders it a multi-layered experience. “Swept Away”—with its dance-tinged beat—provides the album’s most upbeat moment.

Overall the album is a distinct chill-out, lounge-appropriate compilation of darkly intense tunes. Its themes of love and heartbreak makes it a highly relatable and influential piece, luring you into a world of nostalgia in mere seconds. If it must be compared to the previous album, Coexist channels a more uniform sound as well as more EDM influences than its predecessor. Part of its appeal might be in having a different impression during the first few listens, almost as if paralleling the complex nature of emotions.

Out of sight, out of mind, it doesn’t mean you’re not mine, croons Romy in “Unfold.”
Just the excuse I need to relish in my sporadic possessive-obsessive tendencies.

By Natacha Pavlov

Natacha Pavlov is an avid reader, writer, and traveler. Aside from eating ridiculous amounts of chocolate from her native Belgium, she can be found consuming large quantities of tea, falafel and lebneh in the lovely Bay Area.

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