Local Heroes – The Xx and Hot Chip

I was reading an article in the Grauniad the other day, which mentioned a little studio under Putney Bridge. I thought to myself “I’ve walked past that!”. And so my curiosity was rather piqued about the subject of the article, The Xx. Living about five minutes from that studio, on the north side of the River Thames, in a charming if somewhat musically bereft suburb1, I’ve always looked a bit enviously at the south side, where such luminaries as Hot Chip and Burial are from, and Grace Jones now lives (seriously, I’ve been hoping to bump into her in the Putney Exchange doing her shopping in Waitrose).

And The Xx do indeed hail from Putney. Will the majesty of the Lower Richmond Road be translated into some glorious music? Will the dark dankness of the High Street inflect their music with a dour emptiness? Well, a bit of both, really. At first listen of “Infinity” there’s a real Portishead meets Chris Isaak vibe – not a bad mix at all, in my humble opinion. Just the sort of thing to listen to when you’re taking the District Line from East Putney to Earls Court. “Crystalised” is rather nice too:

The debut album is available for pre-order from here, and if it’s anything like the first two tracks released, should be a damn fine listen. Let’s hope they do live up to the hype.

The band are playing a whole bunch of shows, and are at Rough Trade East on Wednesday. Would go myself but sadly I’m already out that night (I’d strongly recommend you go to these shows when they are on – The Hold Steady were fantastic last year).

Whilst I’m on a Putney tip, I’ve got to admit my huge soft spot for Hot Chip’s “Ready For The Floor”. I always thought this lot were from Brooklyn or somewhere, so imagine my suprise when I found out they are from round the corner. Love the video too:

1 We do have a Reasonably Well-Known Rock Star living round the corner, but it would be remiss for me to say who he is.

MP3: Infinity by Xx

MP3: Ready For The Floor by Hot Chip

Buy “XX” (CD) (From Amazon)

Buy Hot Chip’s “Made in the Dark” (CD)

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