In a short period of time the xx went from promising students that attended school together to worldwide indie favorites after the release of their 2009 debut album xx. In early 2012 it was announced that their sophomore effort was in the works to be released later in the year. The biggest question on everyone’s mind; could this album live up to the debut and if so, how good could it be? As the anticipation for the album rose, the xx have calmly crafted Coexist.
As it was mentioned before, the group met while studying at Elliot school in England. The school has become notable for having produced other English bands such as Hot Chip, Burial and Four Tet. Although they initially began playing music at 15 as a joke, Romy Madley Croft and Oliver Sim finally found their calling. Soon after Baria Qureshi joined on guitar and Jaime Smith joined as a producer. Together the xx brought an influxation of simple guitar riffs, heavy bass lines, layered electronic drums, and the opposing yet cohesive voices of Croft and Sim. While in certain songs their voices might rival one another, there is also the instance of their harmonize unison that syncs perfectly with their music.
Coexist is no exception to this. The record begins with the dreamy lead single “Angels” that features an airy atmospheric feel that’s accompanied by Croft soothing voice. With lyrics like “Light reflects from your shadow. It is more than I thought could exist.” the album begins with as much charm as 2009’s xx did. As the album advances very little changes are made to the overall structure of each songs. Unfortunately for some, listening may quickly become dull after the consistent slate of slow songs. However when the album does meliorate on songs like “Sunset” or “Tides,” Coexist delivers a refreshing upbeat peak that brings the listener right back into the album. The bands tries its best to mirror xx while still instilling the new creativity of Coexist.
Unless you’re going through a bad breakup or seemed to be consistently depressed from love, this album may not be so accessible to you. You might wonder, “How can these guys have such bad luck with everyone?” There is also the possibility that you’ll want to use lyrics from the album to use for your Facebook statuses, tweets, and texts to subconsciously send to your exes or xxes — get it? The most reasonable probability is that you just might enjoy listening to some sweet indie pop. The xx are all about heartfelt lyrics over mellow rhythms and euphonic melodies; who doesn’t enjoy that? 4/5.
By: KRUA Music Manager Felipe Godoy