Written by Ted Christodulidis
“I don’t know, I don’t know, I don’t know, I don’t know what this is, but it doesn’t feel wrong,” cries out Romy Madley Croft during 'Say Something Loving'. While most would consider this line as an attempt by Croft to tell a newfound love how she feels, the line, in my opinion, is the quintessence of The xx’s third studio album I See You. It’s something newfound, yet vaguely familiar; something that can’t quite be recognized but just seems natural.
In releasing their latest work, the London trio has taken a fresh approach to what has made them unique for so long. With Jamie XX coming fresh off of his come-from-behind 2015 album In Colour, his influence and incredible production (although evident on the past two albums) shines through on every piece, allowing for a harmonious tie that truly brings the album together in perfect consonance.
During a BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix by Jamie XX just a few years ago, there was mention of spending time in Texas creating new material with Croft and bandmate Oliver Sim. In releasing the video for 'On Hold,' the group confirmed that their time was spent in the miniscule art hub of Marfa, Texas, just one short hour from the Mexican border town of Chihuahua. There’s something about the arrangement of the instruments, the rhythms and the overall vibe of the influence that really brings out the influence of the southwest and is maintained throughout the album, but not so much that it feels like an old spaghetti western soundtrack - really just the right amount to just make it discernible.
"It’s something newfound, yet vaguely familiar; something that can’t quite be recognized but just seems natural."