VOTE NOW FOR THE BEST OF ORLANDO® 2021!

Wednesday, October 7, 1998

Review - XO

Artist: Elliott Smith

Posted on Wed, Oct 7, 1998 at 4:00 AM

Elliott Smith's performance of the Oscar-nominated "Miss Misery" from the soundtrack to "Good Will Hunting" at last year's Academy Awards was one of the event's great oddball moments. Stringy-haired, dour and unrepentantly lo-fi, Smith's was a quirky presence amid Celine Dion and other assorted airbrushed celebs.

He is as quirky as ever on "XO." Smith doesn't push past his established borders. His instruments are guitar and the occasional drums, bass or piano accompanied by the odd, languid chorus of strings. His forbears include Dylan, The Beatles, and Simon & Garfunkel. Thematically his oeuvre covers the same territory as your local coffee bar troubadour -- love, failure and regret. The difference is that songs such as "Waltz #2 (XO)," with its big yet understated chorus, or the quietly devastating "Pitseleh" make you wonder why anyone bothers with anything but the basics. Samplers or scathing guitar solos couldn't make for a more varied or better album.

Smith's genius is for nuance, cutting observations and unexpected transitions and harmonies -- a genius perfectly captured on "XO."

Tags:

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at feedback@orlandoweekly.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Read the Digital Print Issue

May 12, 2021

View more issues

Calendar

© 2021 Orlando Weekly

Website powered by Foundation