Posts Tagged ‘James Blake’

Few bands have won such deserved praise as the XX

On the night after Jamie XX took to the stage at Forbidden Fruits in Dublin (I wasn’t there, and I don’t want to think about how good it could have been), it occurred to me just how important that he, Jamie Smith, and his bandmates Romy Madley-Croft and Oliver Sim have become to music in just two short years. By now, we all know how good their debut album was, but one thing that had eluded some critics at the time – and what I would consider their best asset – was their uncanny ability to identify and exploit the precise direction that contemporary music was going in.  The sparse, dubstep and Rn’B-inspired sounds on the record can now be seen in artists as varied as Katy B (who has got plenty of abuse on this site) and (the excellent) James Blake. In short, their next album will probably be another brilliant, cutting-edge piece of 24-carat lovely gold.

Both Gil and Jamie enjoyed huge success from their recent collaboration

Not much is known about when the band will get together to record a new LP, but the signs are promising, given Jamie’s sublime collaboration with the late, great Gil Scott-Heron. We’re New Here served the dual purpose of augmenting the XX’s status as one of the most forward-thinking outfits on the planet, while exposing the Godfather of Hip-Hop’s wonderfully dark oeuvre to a new generation. Heron left this world during a time when his music was being rediscovered, a fitting way for a largely-forgotten legend to go out. Jamie has kept our lust for XX-related stuff  ticking over with some great remixes over the past few months, such as this faltydl-hip-love-jamie-xx-remix as well as this great mix with Oneman for Fact Magazine http://www.factmag.com/2011/04/13/fact-mix-239-jamie-xx-oneman/. These may possibly give us an idea as to the creative direction of the next XX album, and although neither of their two singers possess the same charisma as Gil Scott Heron, it never stopped them before. I’m going to do something a little bit unwise and predict with absolute certainty that the 2nd XX album will be a MASSIVE success, both creatively and commercially. Anyone who can do this deserves to be exceedingly wealthy… 

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