Thursday, October 22, 2009

Live Review - The xx @ Apple SoHo

It is blitzkrieg bop in New York City this week with the CMJ Music Marathon in town. Hundreds of bands from around the world falling into the cities venues to promote the hell out of themselves and get noticed. It is exhausting for everyone involved; from organizers, artists, spectators and journalists alike going from gig to gig, party to party and blurry night after blurry night. With most nights ending till the whee hours of the morning, it was nice to catch an early show from one of the most talked about bands leading up to the week, the UK's The xx.
The xx played an intimate free gig at Apple Store in SoHo tonight, just last night they had an overwhelming turn out to their show at Mercury Lounge with fans waiting for hours to get in and many more being rejected at the door. With that, this small free show seemed like a good catch. Arriving early was key and grabbing a seat right in third row center, I was shocked to get a full 50 minute set, when I was just anticipating 3-4 songs. The xx walked on stage as if they just shopped down the block at Topshop / Topman and seemed a bit scared to play to us few hundred in attendance. The xx, whose sound is a cross between Glasvegas meets Mono, are an interesting band to witness and listen to. They are not the type of band you want to be standing when you see them, they can certainly make you relax and unwind, but in no way is their music dull and boring. In fact it is the opposite, its very intricate and involved. With two singers, a programmer and a backing guitarist / synth op set a nice mood in a non traditional venue. The Apple store's sound was very good and the show was being recorded for iTunes. I didn't mind sitting from the comfort of a chair for this band, after all, it has been a long week and nice to take a load off, I only wish I had a glass of Red.....