The xx’s Oliver Sim has discussed his struggles with alcohol in a new interview.
The trio are set to release their third album, ‘I See You’, on January 13 and spoke about the difficulties they faced in the period after the campaign for their second album ‘Coexist’ was concluded.
While Jamie Smith was recording and touring his solo album ‘In Colour’ and Romy Madley Croft was away in Los Angeles, Sim stayed at home in London. He said during that time he struggled with self-doubt and the realisation he was “reaching an age where being the drunkest person in the room isn’t charming anymore”.
He told Pitchfork: “I was going out a lot with the excuse that I was celebrating—‘celebrating’—the past few years. Just fighting the idea of becoming an adult. Some friends had started to mellow a bit, and I didn’t want to.
“And with alcohol, like a lot of things, it’s all or nothing for me,” he continued. “So right now it’s just nothing.”
He said it has been over a year since he last drank, while he added that private interventions from his bandmates helped him stop. “I was the last person to think that I wasn’t drinking… successfully,” he explained. “Everyone had voiced their opinions. But the problem was that I was, I suppose, distancing myself, so I thought, ‘How would they know?’
“That’s real telltale. Romy and Jamie confronting me independently was… the last straw. The fact that I wasn’t being creative hit harder—and kidding myself that I felt more creative with a drink in me.”
Sim wrote some lyrics about his struggles on a song called ‘Naive’ in the lines “Everyone’s trying to save me/Can’t they see I’m having fun?“, but it didn’t make it onto the final record.