Album: This is All Yours
Album Reviewer: Michael Mariscal
Alt-J’s sound is characterized by it’s variety within itself. The band will use nearly anything as a foundation for a song. The first track, Intro, of the album is initially constructed through a rhythmic series of “la’s”, but finishes with a loud, low drum beat to match the “hey’s” the singers transitioned to using. The song Pusher is an acoustic ballad that reaches points of quiet only attainable by a band that began in student halls where they were forced to keep it down. And then there’s the curveball Left hand Free, the folksy-funky song that features a baritone sax playing one note basically the whole song.
The only constant is the feeling of melancholy that likely stems from singer Gus Unger-Hamilton’s affinity towards empty space and quiet. It’s mostly a positive, as it gives the band its incredibly unique identity. But it also can counteract the crescendos of the band, as when the band seems ready to take a song to another level, Unger-Hamilton often fails to take them there.
Overall, that’s about the only flaw I can connect to this album. Their unique, creative approach to music allows for a flexibility that makes for an album that stays stimulating throughout. I give it a 4.0.