alt-j (∆) // album review

Alt-J (∆) is weird. Not bad weird, but weirdly amazing. They do things in An Awesome Wave that I’m not used to and that excites me. I’d like to think I discovered alt-J on my own but it was my love of Two Door Cinema Club that led me here. Alex Trimble from TDCC mentioned them in an interview. Alt-J was in town around the same time I saw TDCC at the Music Hall of Williamsburg and I can’t remember being more upset about missing a show. An Awesome Wave is one of the Barclaycard Mercury Prize Albums of the Year and based on the buzz, I’d say alt-J is a favorite. (The Award Show is on 1 November) The last album I felt this entranced by was Portishead’s Dummy (1994). Gwil Sainsbury (guitar/bass), Joe Newman (guitar/vocals), Gus Unger-Hamilton (keyboards) and Thom Green (drums) met in 2007 while studying at Leeds University and moved in together after graduation. They wrote and practiced for a few years until signing with Infectious Records in 2011.

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Today is alt-J day so you will see a surplus of Gwil on my blog because of his absence… MISS YOU GWIL. This is from the last time i saw alt-J in december and the first time i saw them in april. They were so amazing, playing at this tiny venue down the street and the fans knew every song and it was amazing. Im gonna miss you gwil, i have one of his picks! After seeing them 4 times they are one of the best acts of 2013. ILY joe, gwil, gus, and thom. <3


MODERN JESUS (remix by Thom Green)

The Musical Conversation

While watching a recent live performance, he said, “I HATE it when the crowd sings along! I didn’t pay fifty bucks for a ticket to hear myself or the guy next to me sing!”

It’s one of the main disagreements we have about the purpose of music. To him, music exists to provide him entertainment: a distraction, background noise. Although music can sometimes serve that purpose for me as well, I also see music as a conversation.

When I stream a song or album, I tell marketing companies what is relevant to me right now. When I purchase an album, I am asking record labels for more of the same. When I tweet a playlist or message a song to a friend, I am sharing a snapshot of my life at this moment. When I buy a band’s merch, I am “paying” them and voicing my support. When I buy a concert ticket, I am investing my money, mind, body, and soul into the support of this artist.

He sees concerts as a one-time event. “You saw them three years ago, why do you need to see them again?” I could happily see the same concert on six consecutive days on six different stages and it would never grow old because of this conversation. “You spoke to your sweetheart a month ago, why do you need to call her again today?” Music is as alive and warm to me as a lover and the conversation is joyous every time it takes place.

At a concert, when I sing back, I am communicating directly with the artist. THIS song speaks to me. This music is a part of me. I want to participate in this beauty, this art. Dave Grohl is quoted as saying, “That’s one of the great things about music. You can play a song to 85,000 people and they’ll sing it back for 85,000 reasons.”

Joe, Gus, Thom and Gwil poured their heart and soul into Matilda. When Joe steps back from the mike and the crowd sings his words back to him, the song becomes a conversation, a two-way expression of love. I can’t even begin to know what the band feels in those moments, but I hope it moves them even a fraction as much as their music moves me.

super duper too good to be true happy at the minute

dno why

things are alright

and i’m just not sad

which is good yes

i met alt j on sunday and they were so nice and funny and i love thom most and he liked my insta photo of me with them yay and then joe asked us for another photo after our first one with a funny pose tehehe


going america in a month wooop

then leeds festival

nobody really cares

but i’m happy so wateva