PHOTOS / RECAP: Jamie xx @ Bimbo’s 365 Club, San Francisco, CA 7.27.15

Photos by Justin Yee

Oh my gosh. After dropping his much anticipated and widely praised debut LP earlier this year, Jamie xx (of The xx fame) has been making waves with his live sets across the globe, and last night it was San Francisco’s turn to witness the master craftsman at work. While he didn’t use any classically recognizable or mainstream songs like he has during recent festival sets and for Apple Music over the weekend, the sold out crowd didn’t seem to mind one bit.

Heavy in atmosphere and working from an ambient foundation, Jamie took his sweet time, never hitting the audience over the head with any one theme. Parlor tricks like huge EDM drops were nowhere to be found; instead each segment and assortment of sounds were given time to breathe and settle into a groove. In stark opposition to the opening DJ, Young Marco, this set traversed a wide array of soundscapes and moods while making references to many dance eras of the past, yet it never felt retro — it was entirely of this moment, looking towards the future, and all pulled off with absolute precision. It was the kind of set that could only come from a student and true fan of all styles of music.

By the time Jamie got to the killer one-two punch of album standouts “Gosh” and the dancehall tinged “Good Times”, the Bimbo’s crowd was in a state of absolute rapture. It’s telling that he didn’t say a single word to the audience during his nearly two-hour set. He didn’t want to hype up the crowd, because, well, he simply didn’t need to: the music spoke for him.

Needless to say, even if you’re not a huge fan of DJs (like yours truly) you should catch him on tour while you can. While he’s spending most of the next few months crisscrossing across Europe, he has two more weeks of North American dates which finish in Boston on August 9th, and he’ll be returning for a quick west coast victory lap in October.