Tuesday 26th November

| BY Paul Toner

With Another Raf Simons Partnership Under Way, Are The xx Fashion’s Favourite Band?

It’s hard to believe The xx’s self-titled debut record was released a decade ago. Over the past ten years, we have watched the trio grow from shy teenagers stumbling over their words as they accepted the Mercury Prize back in 2009, to globe-trotting festival headliners who have found their footing both inside and outside the band – most notably Jamie xx’s solo endeavour In Colour, released back in 2015.

Celebrating 10 years since their first LP packed with whispery love songs was released, the band has teamed up with Raf Simons on a super-special project. Teased on the band’s Instagram, Romy, Jamie & Oliver are shot and styled by Simons’ long-term collaborators Willy Vandapere and Oliver Rizzo, all sporting black roll-necks adorned with a pin of the brand’s synonymous “xx” logo embossed with Simons’ initials. It’s still unbeknown as to what the collaboration entails, a preview will be printed inside the next issue of System magazine which is due to arrive in newsagents later this week.

Yet The xx are no fashion-first timers. In addition to being in just about any big front row, their tunes are also catwalk show regulars, its hazy electronic beats obviously serving to some fierce sashaying in the bright lights. And if you’ve been lucky enough to get yourself on the guest list of one of the swankier fashion shindigs of recent memory, you bet at least one of the trio were on the DJ line-up. Romy spun house classics at Gucci, Valentino and Acne Studios parties (and that’s all in the past few months), most recently joining her fellow bandmate and DJ titan Jamie at manning the decks at Young Turks and Dazed’s Halloween bash at The Standard hotel.

Whilst Romy and Jamie have been the wizards at the turntables at some of the most memorable parties, Oliver Sim has previously jumped in front of the lens for a series of Dior Campaigns. Sim and his smouldering gaze became one of the poster boys for Kris Van Assche’s tenure at Dior Homme, alongside the likes of Larry Clark and Boy George – with the brand’s SS16 campaign film actually soundtracked by Stranger In A Room, a deep-cut from Jamie xx’s In Colour featuring Sim on vocals.

We’re particularly intrigued by The xx’s upcoming project with Simons after both parties collaborated on the band’s terrific I Dare You music video back in 2017. At the time when Simons held the helm at Calvin Klien, the video acted as a mini coming-of-age film. Drenched in a sun-kissed grainy glow courtesy of Alasdair McLellan, the video stars Calvin Klein 205W39NYC muses Paris Jackson, Millie Bobby Brown, Ashton Saunders and Lulu Tenney – all aimlessly wanting to escape white picket fence suburbia. Both the bandmates and the cast are dressed to the nines in Raf’s distinct ode to Americana; think 1970s workwear suits and denim twinsets stamped with a “205” on the collar and a patch depicting Brooke Shields at the rear. 

For a band who all originate from London, on paper the video concept may seem an ill fit. Yet, under the Californian palm trees, the trio look and feel at home. Like their gentle, R&B twinged love songs, the band themselves are universal. Whether they’re playing the Pyramid stage at Glasto, DJing at a glitzy fashion party or collaborating with Mr. Simons himself – we simply refuse to ever stop renewing our stan card for this trio.