"They've gone from playing in a sandpit together as kids to producing one of the most critically acclaimed albums of the year. Alex Petridis meets the xx, the band quietly taking over the world" - The Guardian Weekend magazine
If I had a pound for every time a broadsheet hailed a band as the next big thing, I'd be able to afford a weekend for two at a Best Western hotel in a provincial city. Off season.
There is something particularly laughable about a thirtysomething broadsheet journalist trying to tap into the zeitgeist. I'd hate to be a rock critic. Every year you're a little bit older, but the bands, like policemen, seem to get younger and younger. How do you maintain your street cred?
I remember thinking that anyone over 25 was the enemy. When I was at university, there was a rumour going around that a friend was actually 27. We were horrified and felt a raw, visceral disgust, as if someone had asked us to sleep with a pensioner.
The only person over 25 who had credibilty was John Peel.
As for the xx, I was about to write a diatribe about boy bands and the way they try to look so mean and moody in photos, because they're so ridiculously serious about their music. It's only pop, not Mahler.
However, I was wrong on two counts. First, one of them is a girl. Second, the music is rather good. I can't say I'll be playing it in the car, but if I was 19, I'd have loved its miserablist soundscape and pretentious lyrics (or at least pretended to).