Song of the Moment: breathy and chilled-out, ‘Crystalised’ definitely sets The XX apart from the rest
“You’ve applied the pressure, | To have me crystallized. | And you’ve got the faith, | That I could bring paradise. | I’ll forgive and forget, | Before I’m paralyzed. | Do I have to keep up the pace, | To keep you satisfied?”
– The XX, “Crystalised”
Artist: The XX
Album: XX, released August 2009
The XX have finally invaded my iPod!
From the beginning guitar rift, the listener is in for a lesson in the slow death of a relationship. The drums sound like a horse trotting, as if the listener is on a journey of love’s mistakes. The melody and beat combine to remind me of the drawing out that torments many young couples afraid of being alone. With references to Icarus (“closer to the sun”), The XX craft and package the emotions associated with being immature and scared about being the first to pull the plug on a not-quite-right relationship, or even with getting too close to the dangerous breaking point of a relationship.
Their minimalist approach to the production really underscores the emotions packed within the lyrics. It is not often that a song with such minuscule production and listening time can hold my attention, but there is something about this band. Pretty much every song from their 2009 album “XX” is amazing.
The band itself is an indie outfit from Britain. They met as school “chaps” and began playing together. They made some pretty epic music together, even wining the Mercury Music Prize in 2010 for their debut effort.
On a side note, after hearing this for the first time today, I was immediately reminded of Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used To Know” Feat. Kimbra. It was as if Gotye’s hit single was the aftermath of The XX’s eerie ode to what not to do in a self-destructing relationship.
All in all, this song is really kick-ass and I will definitely be playing The XX out for the duration of the summer.