The xx's "Coexist" fails to impress with lack of progression
Electro-indie band The xx came in a seemingly endless flood of independent music in 2009. During that year, it seemed electronic indie had taken over with bands like Phoenix, Two Door Cinema Club and MGMT dominating the airwaves. While the majority of these bands specialized in upbeat, poppy music, The xx released slower, much quieter tunes — leaving less of an impression on mainstream radio than its peers. In that time, the band was a breath of fresh air in a genre of sameness, keeping their volume knobs safely at around seven while their indie rock brethren cranked up to 11. On Tuesday, The xx returned with a brand new record called “Coexist,” an album filled with songs that sound straight out of their debut album “xx.”
Unfortunately — in the current context of music — this album does not bring the same unique elements into the mix, but simply serves as a near carbon-copy of its predecessor. That is not to say the album is not solid in other aspects; it has great melodic sensibilities, and the instrumentation is top notch. The songs “Missing” and “Tides” bring some interesting rhythms and melodies to the table, but unfortunately, this is all lost in a quite boring package that leaves the listener feeling apathetic about this release.
It’s always unfortunate when a talented band releases a follow-up album that does not have the same impact as its predecessor, but that is simply the case sometimes. This album is well-produced and well-played, but it unfortunately lacks the unique factor of its debut. Perhaps The xx’s next album will venture into new territory, utilizing the true talent they have, but unfortunately this record leaves quite a lot to be desired.