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X Ambassadors—The VHS 2.0 Tour, March 30, Knitting Factory

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PHOTO BY ABBY GILLARDI
  • Photo by Abby Gillardi


If you watch American Idol, The Voice (in any of the 60 territories where it airs), X Factor or the like, you've probably heard X Ambassadors even if you've never heard of X Ambassadors.

The Brooklyn-based alt-rock band released its label debut EP Love Songs, Drug Songs (Interscope, 2013) a mere three years ago, but emotional lyrics and driving rhythms—a la Imagine Dragons—sent XA tunes charging up the charts and infusing radio playlists. Coupled with lead vocalist Sam Harris' impassioned delivery and effortless falsetto, XA's anthemic songs are ideal for singing competition contestants who want to show off their chops.

Less than a year ago, XA dropped its full-length debut VHS (KidInAKorner/Interscope, 2015), which hit No. 7 on the Billboard 200. It's a dense 20-track album, featuring Imagine Dragons and XA label mate Jamie N Commons on a couple of songs. It also features the single "Unsteady," which is hugely popular with XA fans and hopeful singers across the world praying their rendition will be the big break they've been waiting for—or at least convince Adam Levine or Blake Shelton to turn around.

Joining X Ambassadors in Boise on Wednesday, March 30, by Swedish singer Seinabo Sey and pop duo Savior Adore.