Alt-J has been around for a couple of years with only a 4 track EP and one album. Their debut album ‘An Awesome Wave’ was released by Infectious Music, and drew on multiple musical genres and sensibilities such as folk, rock bass, catchy pop, hip-hop beats, trip hop atmosphere, indie-rock quirkiness and electronic heavy synth riffs to conjure up a unique sound which has proved to be infectiously popular. They were wedded to intimately personal, sometimes confessional lyrics, peppered with film and literary references.
Although their latest debut album was released in May 2012, Alt-J have recently hit the spotlight; becoming more noticed around the UK after receiving their 2012 British Barclaycard Mercury award as the bookmakers’ favourite in September, and was announced as BBC Radio 6 Music Album of the Year 2012.
‘Breezeblocks‘, one of the songs from the album, based on Maurice Sendak’s picture book, ‘Where the Wild Things Are‘ it was released on 18 May 2012 as the album’s second single. It was only on November 8th the song got recognition and was awarded the UK Video Music Award (UKVMA) for “Best Alternative Video”.
‘An Awesome Wave’ received positive reviews from most music critics. ‘drowned in sound’ described An Awesome Wave as “a beautifully rounded, awesome debut album” and said “Whatever alt-j were aiming for with their debut album, they have managed to prove their value as talented musicians, literary enthusiasts and imagery aficionados.
The album had positive feedback with the odd negative comment saying that the songs were ‘draining, elongated MOR tunes’ but overall at Metacritic, which assigns a normalised rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 70, based on 18 reviews, which indicates “generally favorable reviews”.
The band are touring the UK in May 2013 with supports ‘Hundred Waters‘ and ‘Princess Chelsea‘. If you want more details on the band and their upcoming shows/music releases, check out their Facebook page.
Alt-J (∆) - Breezeblocks