Coexist - XL
FILTER Grade: 82%
By Gianna Hughes on September 11, 2012
“I know your face all too well,” sings Oliver Sim on “Fiction,” the third song on The xx’s sophomore album, Coexist. Hearing a line sung with such conviction, you can’t help but reminisce about the person you wish you could forget, but never will. These familiar themes of love, longing and loss are explored in the follow-up to 2009’s xx, on songs like “Chained,” where Romy Madley Croft sings, “Did I hold you too tight? Did I let enough light in?” while reevaluating the demise of a relationship.
Although Coexist is not much of a departure from the band’s debut (in fact, it is more an extension of it), The xx has refined its sound, creating an even sparser atmosphere. But there is strength in this minimalism. Each word is intentional; each note is felt. And when exploring the concept of the star-crossed lovers, The xx inspires the listener to reflect on the one who was never fully attainable. When listening to a song such as “Angels” in a dimly lit venue, it will be easy to lose yourself in the darkness; during those two minutes and 43 seconds, you will be in a universe of your own. And long after you leave, the pathos will still resonate.