March 07, 2010

the xx - academy 2

so much hype was surrounding this gig, with the xx becoming THE band to like, being hip, trendy and different. luckily, tickets were sold out before the mega hype arrived and therefore the crowd was much better than otherwise.

glasser were the first band. i missed the first few minutes, but when i came it was a really pleasant surprise. definitely going to become a big fan after their excellent performance. mysterious electro-pop (mostly electro) is what glasser is all about, with an apple mac taking centre stage. a woman clad in just a white gown, of sorts, and two fellows with strange beekeeper-esque hoods on. their mystery was one thing, but the electro tunes they pumped out were excellent for a band of their size, but kudos to the xx for clearly thinking about their supports to fit in with the whole night as a spectacle. i implore you to check them out on myspace, especially 'apply' and 'glad'

then stepped out these new puritans, whom we were all looking forward to see. hype for their recent album 'hidden' has propelled them into the same category as the xx as being a really cool band. they started emphatically, playing my favourite 'we want war', the 7 minute beast with dark beats and encapsulating power. this combination is a recurring theme, with 'attack music' being boomed out, along with other songs from 'hidden'. really impressive performance, although some puritan purists may have argued that no emphasis was on their material from 'beat pyramid' with only 'infinity ytinifni' being played. but you cannot really falter their show, and personal performances which stayed intact throughout.

enter the xx. behind a massive white sheet they started with the often-opener of 'intro'. it went down a treat, as we all knew it would. the sheet fell as the intro finished and the members were shown, looking suave, mysterious and completely at-ease with the audience. they went on to play 'crystalised', instead of the expected vcr, and it went to show that this now 3-piece can do little or no wrong when it comes to choosing setlists. they then played soon-to-be-timeless classics such as 'islands' and 'heart skipped a beat'. then another excellent piece of thinking with a minimalistic combination of male 'fantasy' followed by female 'shelter' working superbly. the womack & womack cover of 'teardrops' was incredible and a highlight of the night. 'basic space' and 'vcr' were still crowd-favourites but this set was so strong and i for one am not the only person who is eagerly anticipating the sophomore album.

rating - 4.9/5
i couldn't think of one way it could have been better, apart from the crowd knowing some more of the lyrics, which is definitely a minor point and didn't take anything away from the atmosphere of the xx's set.
easy contender for gig of the year already.


  1. so jealous bobby,
    great review

  2. cheers tab, you did miss out unfortunately :/

  3. :'(
    and you didn't pick up!

  4. Ace review.

    Didn't catch the name of the first band (we also missed the beginning) but they were a nice surprise, so cheers for the heads up!

  5. bobby, These New Puritans finished on a Beat Pyramid song, one of their best, Infinity ytinifnI :) otherwise very accurate review (even if i didnt quite 'get' Glasser.

  6. jones since when did you know lyrics either you hip, trendy and different thing