Alt-J Talk New Album ‘Relaxer’ And Good Vibes Festival 2018

Gus Unger-Hamilton, Joe Newman and Thom Sonny Green of Alt-J (Image: Gabriel Green)

It’s been about half a decade since Alt-J’s Mercury-Prize winning album, ‘An Awesome Wave’ made its debut. Crowd-favourite tracks from the British experimental indie-rock group like ‘Tesselate’ and ‘Matilda’ still make an appearance on my Spotify playlists from time to time, one can’t help but to hum along. Originally formed as a quartet back in 2007, the band is now a trio consisting of Joe Newman (lead vocals/guitar), Gus Unger-Hamilton (keyboards/vocals) and Thom Sonny Green (drums).

Known for their post-modern lyricism, the band’s third album ‘Relaxer’ (2017) revolves around the idea of cynicism, sex and romanticism with references to literature and art.

We spoke to Gus to talk to us about the new album while they’re on tour, on their way to grace us with their music at Good Vibes Festival 2018, read on for the full interview.

Can you tell us a little bit ABOUT ‘Relaxer’? 

We were just enjoying being back in the studio together. As with all our albums we drew inspiration from art and literature, such as How Green Was My Valley by Richard Llewellyn and As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning by Laurie Lee.

the main message to take away from this album?

“Don’t trust the fake news media!”

RELATED: The XX Will Be In Malaysia In A Week And We Have The Exclusive Interview

is there a specific reason behind the band’s influence by medieval harmonies?

I was a chorister at an English cathedral, so we sang a lot of that kind of music. Also at university I ran a choir that sang early music which Joe was in too, so that helped.

How do you guys execute an idea as a band? 

We are a democracy, however Joe does sometimes play the role of a benevolent dictator when he needs to.


What has been your favourite part about being on tour? And what would you say is your least favourite part about it?

My favourite part is being with my close mates, seeing the world and eating a lot. The worst part is missing home and living out of a suitcase.

anything specific you’re looking forward to during your visit to malaysia?

The food!

Will fans at good vibes festival 2018 be able to experience your award-winning light show? 

Absolutely! It’s going to be better than ever.