“I want to turn you inside out and lick you like a crisp packet”: seductive, or just plain weird? Either way, and despite the randomness and ambiguity of many of their lyrics, Alt-J only seems to be gaining in popularity. That’s why it was no surprise when they sold out the Fillmore Auditorium in Denver on Tuesday, Oct. 28. Ticket prices had climbed to well above $50, but the show was still packed. Alt-J’s performance was far from disappointing; it was enchanting.
Alt-J is a modern indie-alternative band that has only recently emerged from the United Kingdom and rocketed to popularity. Alt-J was formed as a quartet and is now a trio, with Joe Newman and Gus Unger-Hamilton as the lead vocalists. Their band name stems from the key combination on a Mac keyboard needed to make the delta symbol (∆).
“An Awesome Wave,” their first album, was an instant indie-pop culture hit. Their second album, “This Is All Yours,” upheld the delicate balance between experimentation and the maintenance of original sound. Alt-J has earned popularity because their sound is so unique, fusing genres while both calming and exciting listeners. “This Is All Yours” was released in late September, and the tour will continue to Europe and Australia.
Lovelife, a synth-pop band, played the opening set of the Denver show. Although their energy flowed well and they could definitely gain more popularity in the future, the audience was impatient for Alt-J. The band finally appeared, dressed completely in black and silhouetted by red lights with the opening notes of their single, “Hunger of the Pine.”
The set list appears to have remained fairly consistent throughout this tour, but that could be because it is composed to have a perfect mix of songs from both albums. The band maintained a modest yet mysterious persona, but their music was wonderfully executed, complete with an incredible light show that was unique to each song. One particularly stunning part of the performance was the song “Taro,” which featured pillars of lit psychedelic geometric shapes and sunset-colored lights.
Although the set could have been a bit longer, the show was overall transcendent. Be sure to add Alt-J to your list if you haven’t already, as each album is a work of art in its own right.