The xx, Rialto Theatre, 2/17/13

Categories: Last Night

The light show was a character all its own, as hard lighting and strobes emphasized key musical moments. The green flashing lights during "Swept Away" added a strange sense of urgency that reminded me of the scene in Cloverfield where the characters climbed the stairwell as emergency lights flickering in the background.

This feeling of unease was heightened during "Try" as bright lights blinded the audience and the song's electronic tones were emphasized. "Infinity" offered a bit of a release, as the color pallet returned to black and white and Madley Croft and Sim's vocals switched off in a beautiful song about loss that echoed Chris Isaak's "Lynchian" rockabilly stylings.

During the encore break, a giant white "X" modeled after the band's self-titled album art was projected on the screen. The band returned for a three-song encore starting with the instrumental song "Intro," prompting a good share of the audience to take video. "Intro" blended directly into "Tides," which brought back intricate color lighting and more bass.

Sim walked to the edge of the stage to say a few words before the band's final song.

"This feeling's like a wedding, sorry," he said with hesitation, thanking Austra, the crew and the fans for coming out for what he described as one of his favorite tours. He picked up his bass and the lights once again dimmed, this time revealing a bunch of white "stars" modeled after pinhole photography for "Stars," which echoed the lyrics and sentiments of "Infinity" and was a cohesive way to end the set. All three musicians stood in a line and faced the crowd to say goodbye in a bittersweet moment, but fortunately The xx will be back on tour soon.

The xx's Marquee Theatre show will sell out very soon, and it would be a shame for any fan to miss out on seeing them.

Check out the setlist and Critic's Notebook on page two.

Location Info


Rialto Theatre

318 E. Congress, Tucson, AZ

Category: Music

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