Massive Attack, Etc. | Crystalised (The xx)

Admittedly, I’ve been a bit disappointed with some of the early tracks I’ve heard off the new The xx album, “Coexist”, due out Sept. 10 via Young Turks. But surely, anything following the band’s stellar self-titled 2009 debut was going to feel like a bit of a drag. But before the official release, we have this new cover of “Crystalised” posted by one half of Massive Attack (Robert “3D” Del Naja) at soundcloud (new link below from YouTube) — a site he used in November of last year to post a demo simply titled, “3D & VERMONA DEMO”. The crediting seems a bit confusing, but on facebook Massive Attack lists Del Naja and engineer Euan Dickson as contributing to the song. On soundcloud, this creative re-imagining has the additional listing of collaborative cohorts Martina Topley Bird, Warpaint, and Mark Lanegan. I’m not sure where Warpaint comes in, but that sensual funk-bass has a Jenny Lee Lindberg feel. What is clear is the raspy-voice of Lanegan and the low-key whispery beauty of Topley Bird’s singing. This cover is a good reminder just how wonderful The xx’s first record was. — David D. Robbins Jr.

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