Tag Archives: The XX

the xx on mda

ROMY MADLEY CROFT XXRecently,  I went to see The xx with some friends.  One of those friends offered me MDA, no extra M.  It’s what the kids are doing now.  It has been a hot minute since I rolled, and I’m usually not a fan of taking pills at shows, but for The xx it seemed appropriate. ROMY MADLEY CROFT XXWe guzzled down the tabs before the opening band started.  The pace of the show was rather sluggish.  There was a lot of waiting for the band and for the drugs to kick in.  XX LIVEWhat I also should have probably remembered is that ecstasy and its cousins tend to give me the party pukes.  Generally, this is more of a problem when I rail rather than swallow, but with no food, the sweltering heat, and the intense crowd, the pukes came on hard and fast.  The line to the ladies room was super long so I walked upstairs and tucked behind some ducting.  Classy, I know.  (Bonus points shall be awarded for not getting a drop of puke on my white vintage slip and Frye boots.)

ROMY XX FILLMOREAfter I regained my composure, I returned to the main floor to join my friends.  Then I knelt down and puked again – all water – and I think I got a little on my flip-flop wearing friend’s foot.  So I owe you a pair of shoes, sorry about that.  Then I stood up like the badass bitch I am and enjoyed the show.  Undignified ralphing aside, this trip provided an extremely valuable shift in perspective that I greatly needed.   MDA

For those of you who care less about my drug use and more about actual music.  The set was short.  I can’t be sure considering my condition, but I think they played a little over an hour.  Both at Coachella and at this show, The xx played this disappointing stripped down version of Crystalised.  The set list is heavy on Coexist, which is the lesser of their efforts in my opinion.  I enjoy how their shows feel more intimate and less theatrical.  This band is about the music and generating an atmosphere of sincere emotional response from the audience even if they often seem personally disconnected while playing. ROMY AND OLIVER

Coachella Highs/Lows

I was so over Coachella for a variety of reasons, I inadequately summarized my experience according to some avid readers.  So here we go with the best and the worst of the weekend.  May it help those of you headed into weekend 2.  Chalk it up to nostalgia, but the Violent Femmes were my favorite act of the entire festival.  Their playlist included everything I could have wished for and more.  They kept it moving and they kept it tight.  The most unexpectedly enjoyable set was Jello Biafra who ranted his hypocritically anti-corporate message on the unabashedly corporate-sponsored Coachella stage without any sense of irony.  Everybody splooged over The Postal Service.  Maybe it’s the residual Deschanel, but that band is just so precious and twee.  I love Jenny Lewis, but I love her more in other projects.  Ben I can take or leave. Phoenix executed in a major way, but there was something so polished about the performance it almost felt simulated.  The random of edition of R. Kelly was surprising for sure.  As was Solange’s cameo with The xx, but Coachella needed to squeeze extra diversity wherever possible in their ultra-white lineup this year.  2013 lacked flavor for sure. As for the Chili Peppers, Anthony Kiedis is the Keanu Reeves of rock music.  He’s a douche de la fromage. Flea rules.



3 for Thursday

What most of us are thinking…

Did anyone really ever buy this showmance?  She got sloppy and I love it.  The Twilight movies suck ass anyway.  Oral in the Mini Cooper.  It must have a surprisingly roomy interior. 

What I’m recommending…

This recommendation is overdue ( it was on my watch list before Telluride).  Without a doubt, Marina Abramović The Artist is Present is a super interesting and inspiring movie.  I know some documentaries can feel tedious.  This is not one of them.  Some of you will need more, so I’m loathe to point out the Marina Abramović’s work was referenced in SATC when Carrie was courted by the Russian.  Hey whatever the reason, do watch.  Extra points for the James Franco and Orlando Bloom sightings.

What I’m hearing…

The xx sleeper single Angels.  What’s with the self-consciousness in the vocals Romy?  Got the sophomore album scares?

THE KILLS: blood pressures

Long time readers (smooch!) know Alison Mosshart gets shine here at Demeter Clarc.  After gorging on The Kills new record Blood Pressures, brace for full on gush. 

Can’t say enough positive things about this album – growth – range – development – Blood Pressures delivers on all counts.   Rich and full, aggressive and melodic, funky and rocking, no record has hit on cylinders like this in some time.  (Dare I say since The xx?)Many standout moments sprinkle the eleven song record including: Satellite, Heart is a Beating Drum, DNA, Baby Says, and culminating with new road rage anthem You Don’t Own The Road.

Love. Love. Love.

Shakira: Sale El Sol

At first, I didn’t love Shakira’s new album Sale El Sol, but after five or six listens, it really started to grow on me.  Typically, I prefer my Shakira obsessed and tormented rather than optimistically cheerleading for Africa (Waka,Waka, yo).Personally, I think the title track, Sale El Sol, a mid-tempo snooze-fest, is the weakest of the album.  Devoción is the album highlight among a few other strong selections (Antes De Las Seis, Rabiosa).Now let’s talk about Shakira’s cover of the XX’s Islands.  Loyal readers (gracias!) know that we majorly heart the XX here at Demeter Clarc, and frankly Shakira’s version is no where near as good as the original.  Since the xx came out less than a year and a half ago, I don’t see the point of this unnecessary and not particularly inspired cover.One other small complaint: of fifteen songs, the last four are remixes of songs that appear earlier on the record.  So between the cover and the one-song-two-ways gimmick, Sale El Sol definitely contains some empty calories.


Sorry for the delay on this; it was released a year ago.  Not really sure how it slipped through the butt crack, but 2010 can be the year of The XX in the US.  Procure XX by The XX immediately.  Need an extra nudge?  This one is Karl Lagerfeld approved.Their sound, brimming with dichotomies, is at once familiar and new, atmospheric and intimate, feminine and masculine.  Think Cat Power paired with Pete Yorn singing over Radiohead, and then subtract fifteen years.  The XX is sadly one of the few examples I can think of where a male and female vocal pairing strengthens rather than diminishes the overall sound.Strong composition and musicality backs up the interesting vocal arrangements.  The XX ain’t no one trick pony; the whole record is worth your time.  The down tempo vibe may annoy some, but critics need to puff a doobie and relax.  This is the good shit.

This is a perfect record for a nascent love affair, but don’t waste it on just anyone.