The xx review: Not even torrential rain can get in the way of great music

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The xx review: Not even torrential rain can get in the way of great music


An afternoon of huge downpours wasn’t enough to dampen fans’ spirits. And they were duly rewarded by a stellar set from the English trio. Supported by Kučka and Kelela, a large portion of the crowd timed their arrival for the headliners. Those that did arrive early to see Kelela were treated to a beautiful voice in a live setting.

The xx walked onstage and launched into ‘Intro’ from their debut album before morphing into hit song ‘Crystalised’ and it was immediately apparent that this was going to be a special evening of music. It took a few songs for the vocal mix to get right but after that, it was smooth sailing. The understated soundscapes of Jamie xx provided the perfect folly for guitarist and singer Romy Madley Croft and fellow singer and bassist Oliver Sim to show off their musical talent and impeccable voices.

With a band that is in many ways ambient in sound, it’s always interesting to see what they can bring in a live setting. The crowd were engaged for the whole set and hung on every word they sung. The xx sounded phenomenal live and the 10,000 fans lapped up every song. Leaning heavily on their new album, ‘Say Something Loving’ was a particular highlight, with the emotion of the song really taken up a notch live. All the songs you’d hope to hear from them were played, including ‘Islands’, ‘VCR’, and ‘I Dare You’ as well as an encore after a few minutes of Jamie xx onstage solo of ‘On Hold’ and the hauntingly beautiful ‘Angels’.

While plenty in attendance got rained on, the wet evening only provided an ethereal feel to a stunning evening of music. One that left fans and the band rather speechless.

Highlight: The genuine appreciation of the fans from the band

Lowlight: Melbourne’s summer weather

Crowd Favourite: ‘Angels’