Alt-J – This Is All Yours


Sophomore albums are notorious for being a bump in a band’s career, especially when it’s being preceeded by the British Mercury Prize winning album An Awesome Wave. Nevertheless, Alt-J are still riding the wave of success with their follow up work This is All Yours. Known for their percussive and textural dub-pop sound, Alt-J stay true to their style.

“Intro” begins the album with angelic vocals harmonies that create the illusion of space and dimension, gradually building on the vocals with electronic percussion and intensity.

“Arrival in Nara” instantly drops into a soft and melodic series of ringing chords for just under two minutes, with vocals redirecting the flow into a darker and deeper tone. Smoothly blending into the next track, “Nara” is secondary part of the song, with a promiment attention to percussion and repetition of patterns. The original style of Alt-J comes through strong in the second half of the track, with layers of vocals, choppy yet deep drums and reverberating melodic qualities.

With two different versions of the music video (one boy, one girl) “Every Other Freckle” draws experimental percussion elements, mixed with a catchy chorus hook for the hit single.

Showing off their alternative rock skills and leaving the dup-pop sound at the door for a moment, “Left Hand Free is an easy-breezy hit that rolls off the tongue and keeps the toes tapping.

Skipping forward a few tracks, “Hunger of the Pine is another staple Alt-J track with vibrating synths, unpredictable percussion and poetic lyrics.

 Settling the sonic waves, “Warm Foothills” leaves a sweet ringing in the listener’s ear with folk-based guitar melodies, complimentary male/female vocals and the right amount of support from the synths and percussion. The musicality of the song leaves room for the comprehension of the lyrics that always provide an added experience to an Alt-J song.

 The second half of the album sweeps away the first half with pending frustration seeping through the cracks of the songs, such as the icy “The Gospel of John Hurt”, the sombre “Pusher or the crushing “Bloodflood Pt II (which is a follow up from their first album).

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