Music review: The xx
SWG3 Galvanizers’ Yard, Glasgow ***
The Galvanizers’ Yard is a sort of hip industrial plaza with a considerable capacity but an intimate feel – although that might be down to the introverted electro pop of The xx, who christened the outdoor space with two gigs this week as trains trundled by on a regular basis and occupants of the adjacent student flats got a free ringside seat.
The London trio make popular, polite coffee table music for indie kids of all ages, consisting mainly of breathy duets between Romy Madley Croft and Oliver Sim, who layered on clear, plangent guitar and rumbling bass respectively, with tasteful club beats provided by third member Jamie Smith from atop his DJ riser on the resolutely non-violent A Violent Noise.
Croft held the attention with her expressive singing and playing on Performance, where a mainstream pop balladeer might have made a meal of its nicely wrought pop drama.
But as the set inched to its climax, it was Smith who took control, turning up the volume and turning on the lazers to accompany a blast of his Jamie xx DJ/producer guise.
Loud Places featured the most upbeat, joyful moment of the night in the form of a sample from Idris Muhammad’s space funk gem Could Heaven Ever Be Like This though recent single On Hold fitted naturally into the clubby climax.