Jamie Smith and Romy Madley-Croft have a history of making subdued, commanding songs as The XX. With Loud Places they reunite as individuals collaborating on a sound that reaches for new heights. The lead and backing vocals are nothing short of perfection and it sounds destined to be a festival epic. But Loud Places eclipses the hackneyed anthem fare with heartfelt sincerity both in terms of sound and substance. The ex-couple play off each other with their respective talents, the melancholy vocals competing against a triumphant electronic backdrop. The result is glorious.