- Rolling Stone: Review: The xx's Minimal Sound Gets Expansive Update on 'I See You'
At times, the sonic settings are almost spacious enough to hold an Adele song; on "Performance," Croft croons about having to imagine a whole new persona for herself because the reality of heartbreak is just too brutal. It's ironic, though, because the xx have never been so unguarded, either emotionally or in their musical ambitions. The result is as haunting as ever.
- LA Times: Review The xx lightens up or does it? on 'I See You'
Despite all this, I See You does have a newly welcoming quality, and not just because the musicians have started smiling for the camera. On xx and Coexist, the xx was using sadness as a kind of shield; its stylish monotony kept you from regarding the players as real people open to real connection.
Here, in contrast, the musics dynamics make you feel closely involved in what theyre singing about the highs as well as the lows.
I See You presents a band willing to be seen.
- Slant's Review
The band is often at their best when utilizing the duality of Madley Croft and Sims conversational duets, as on Say Something Loving, a song bolstered by a swell of churning textures. The lone example of overreaching occurs during On Hold, when Smith loops a Hall & Oates sample on a track that sounds so far outside the bands wheelhouse it comes off as too blatant in its grasp for broader appeal. But its by taking these types of chances and stepping out from their established aesthetic that the xx bares their self-professed anxieties, moving themselves into an audacious new direction.
- WSJ: I See You by the xx Review: A Group Grows Up
Satisfying and surprising in all the best ways, I See You puts the xx on a new a quiet, introspective ensemble, they have developed willinglywithout surrendering their singularityinto a trio that creates music that has the vitality of unbridled electronica, the magnetic appeal of from-the-heart ballads and the undeniable vitality of pop. If I See You sets the tone for the year in rock and pop, theres plenty to look forward to.