“And with alcohol, like a lot of things, it’s all or nothing for me. But the problem was that I was, I suppose, distancing myself, so I thought, how would they know?So right now it’s just nothing.” Sim says he hasn’t had a drink in over a year. However, “I was the last person to think that I wasn’t drinking … ”Sim says that another big factor for him in deciding to give up alcohol was the effect it was having on his music and creativity.Even though they write their songs with an uncanny ear for melodic pop, songs like “VCR” and “Islands” seem to exist on the edge of silence.
While its opener, “Angels,” is one of the most beautiful tracks of the decade, many others show the xx running in place, unsure where to go.In the five years since that middling sophomore effort, things changed for the xx.that the band’s upcoming shows will be the first he has ever played sober.“I was going out a lot with the excuse that I was celebrating—‘celebrating’—the past few years,” he says.When Sim and Croft sing, “You are dangerous but I don’t care/I’m going to pretend that I’m not scared/If this only ends in tears/I won’t say goodbye,” they’re taking that “Dangerous” risk.
In these songs, they reveal themselves more than they have in any previous sad song.
Their voices go higher and bigger than ever before.
Even though they’re perfectly aware that the result could be the alienation and disillusion chronicled in “On Hold,” they’re willing to take that chance.
But, he says, “The times when I actually do have, like, a successful conversation, I feel really good about it and it stays with me as opposed to …
kind of not remembering.” Another thing Sim is trying to work out is what it looks like to celebrate and let loose as a sober individual.
Sim gave up binge drinking and partying, while Croft began dating (and later became engaged to) fashion designer Hannah Marshall.