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The xx On World Cafe

The xx On World Cafe

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Oliver Sim, Romy Madley Croft and Jamie Smith are The XX. Torre Hallas hide caption

toggle caption Torre Hallas

Oliver Sim, Romy Madley Croft and Jamie Smith are The XX.

Torre Hallas

Set List

  • "Islands"
  • "Heart Skipped a Beat"
  • "Night Time / Infinity"

The three South London 20 year olds in The xx became one of last year's biggest underground breakthroughs on the strength of their dark new-wave sound. The group's self-titled debut cropped up on many 2009 Top 10 lists and won the 2010 Mercury Prize for best album from the United Kingdom.

The xx's style stems from a variety of mainstream pop influences, but its approach veers toward striking minimalism. Sparse arrangements are built around chilling synths, pulsing rhythms, '80s-style guitar lines and R&B-influenced bass patterns. Without a live drummer, The xx uses negative space to create an airy atmosphere.

This World Cafe performance originally aired on Jan. 29.

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