This week has been a very good one for music. A$AP Rocky sent shockwaves throughout music by releasing his highly anticipated album, At.Long.Last.A$AP, and then out of nowhere, Donnie Trumpet and The Social Experiment shared their anticipated album, Surf. However for those who were looking for something outside of hip-hop, it was Jamie xx previewing his album, In Colour, on iTunes with a colorful visual display to match that really got people going. The album has already been received with rave reviews thus far and he recently sat down with Pigeons and Planes to discuss making the project, the summer hit, "I Know There's Gonna Be (Good Times)" with Young Thug and Popcaan and much more.
The album is titled because In Colour because he wants to try and change the image people have for him as a member of The xx.
He says the title is a "reference to the fact that everyone thinks The xx is very dark, because we all wear black, and we're very melancholy. But actually, this is quite a colorful record."
He has been working on this album for the better part of three years at various points, reworking tracks and making sure he, as a perfectionist, would be happy to release them. One of the tracks which was released as a single, "Loud Places," went through a rigorous examination until it was finished.
"We've had 'Loud Places' in so many different forms. Originally I'd had it as a really sad moment in the record, and I did this whole string arrangement with an orchestra and recorded it, but it was just too melancholy! So I went back and found a sample that matched what Romy was saying and worked that in. The sample is from a song by Idris Muhammad called 'Could Heaven Ever Be Like This.'"
Going through that process, he has had help from his friends and collaborators who have given him feedback on this very personal album.
"All the people that I've worked with and I've been DJing with-John Talabot, Four Tet, Floating Points, Sampha-they've all kind of been inspirations. I've been sending them things back and forth and been playing them stuff to get their feedback," Smith notes. "Then there's Oliver and Romy. They really helped. I get them to come in and listen, tell me everything that's wrong, and tell me what they would do. Then I completely shuffle everything up because I value their opinion the most out of anyone."
The finished version of "Good Times" with Young Thug featured other rappers on demo cuts, but he stuck with Young Thug in end.
"I decided on Young Thug because he's the best," Jamie states dryly. "I was in New York when I made the track and I was living in Brooklyn, driving to Manhattan every day listening to Hot 97. It was the perfect soundtrack and I wanted my own track to be a sort of summer tune."