Logjam Presents

alt-J

Bishop Briggs

The Wilma

Missoula, MT
7:00pm (door) 8:00pm (show)
$55 - $69.50 (Adv.)
Add to Calendar 10/18/2017 20:00 10/18/2017 11:30 pm America/Boise alt-J

Logjam Presents English Indie rock band alt-J live in concert at The Wilma on Wednesday, October 18, 2017! All ages are welcome. Tickets are SOLD OUT. Additional ticketing and venue information can be found here.   alt-J RELAXER is alt-J’s third album, the follow up to the band’s Grammy-nominated This is All Yours. Like the first two albums Charlie Andrews produced… Continue Reading

Logjam Presents - Missoula, Montana false MM/DD/YYYY
SOLD OUT

alt-J

Logjam Presents English Indie rock band alt-J live in concert at The Wilma on Wednesday, October 18, 2017!

All ages are welcome. Tickets are SOLD OUT.

Additional ticketing and venue information can be found here.

 

alt-J

RELAXER is alt-J’s third album, the follow up to the band’s Grammy-nominated This is All Yours. Like the first two albums Charlie Andrews produced it.

In December 2015, alt-J finished touring for This Is All Yours. They had gone straight from touring their debut album, the Mercury Prize-winning An Awesome Wave into writing and recording the second album and then touring non-stop for it (including a sold-out show at Madison Square Garden in NY). “There weren’t any fallings out,” clarifies Newman. “It was just three very close friends who had just spent a lot of time on the road who needed to go somewhere where it wasn’t about music or touring or capitalizing on the demand.”

So they all went home to London. Newman watched a million films. Green released a solo album, High Anxiety (under the name Thom Sonny Green), 21 tracks of glittery, glitchy instrumental electronics. Unger-Hamilton became involved in a pop-up restaurant. Then, late last summer, they decided it was time to record a much-anticipated third album.

Unger-Hamilton describes RELAXER this way: “We’ve always liked our music to be headphone music, that takes you on a bit of a journey. This album goes one step further, a journey into your own mind. It’s quite trippy.”

 

 

No two songs sound alike, and all are written and recorded with the idiosyncratic details that make alt-J so unique. Take the album’s first track “3WW” which begins with Unger-Hamilton, on vocals, embarking on a Chaucer meets-Nick Drake (pre)amble.  There’s a line in the song “the girls from the pool say hi”– with the last word spoken by the threesome’s girlfriends, delivered from an actual swimming pool.  “‘The girls from the pool say hi’ is a note left from the girls,” says Joe Newman by way of explaining 3WW’s thought-through narrative, “and having them say that –in the pool –is a deeper way of actually making you feel like you’re in the moment.”

First single “In Cold Blood,” which takes it’s title from Truman Capote’s classic book, but has absolutely nothing to do with it in terms of themes, builds to a thrilling, brassy, bleepy, shouty climax.

Later the band takes on a traditional oft-covered folk song “House Of The Rising Sun” which was made famous by the Animals in the 1960’s. The band, with scholarly intent, went back to the core of the song, stripping the varnish from The Animals’ version and finding the woody grain in Woody Guthrie’s version of the lyrics. Then they added 20 classical guitarists, playing all at once, recorded over two intense hours.  “Twenty hand movements, 20 squeaks on strings,” states Newman of their six-string symphony, “that gives a really odd, percussive almost subliminal feel.”

“Hit Me Like That Snare” sounds like The Stooges produced by James Murphy. But originally, admits Newman, the references were very different. “It started with a riff that I was playing around with a year before. But I’d kinda left it because it sounded too much like ‘Decks Dark’ on A Moon Shaped Pool. But then I started playing it with really heavy distortion and we recorded it as a jam.”

“Deadcrush” lyrics reach far, linking a near-death experience on a highway (“we aquaplaned in the car and I shouted out ‘fuck my life in half!’, which I thought was a great phrase for a song”), sex parties in sex hotels (“we didn’t visit any on tour,” is their line and they’re sticking to it) and a post-Brexit frustration that the liberal world was going to hell in a handcart.

The album ends with “Pleader.” The band sees it as a foundational song for RELAXER. It’s one of six songs on the album to feature a 30-piece string section, recorded at Abbey Road.  “Pleader” takes lyrical cues from Richard Llewellyn’s classic 1939 novel How Green Was My Valley, and vocal drama from the massed voices of the boys of Ely Cathedral, recorded in situ with accompaniment from the building’s mighty organ.  “It’s almost a secular piece of religious music,” offers Unger-Hamilton. “For me the song is very hymnal,” adds Newman. “And the book is just beautifully written. You could extract so many visual ideas just from one sentence, so I just collected loads of them and then filtered through an alt-J world.”

The album title, Green adds, was apt…  “RELAXER was originally the name of a track I made last year, and then it was in the original lyrics for Deadcrush. And after that, it just seemed to fit the album overall – and we do always want our albums to be listened to as a single piece of music.”

Bishop Briggs

Bishop Briggs Image

While those in a Tokyo karaoke bar may not have realized it, they were witnesses to a life-altering experience for four-year-old Bishop Briggs. As she sang her first song in public, Bishop fell instantly in love with performing, and her auspicious debut served not only as an indelible touchpoint, but also the initial indicator of an unmistakable identity.

Born to Scottish parents, raised in Japan and Hong Kong, immersed in American pop-culture, and having attended college in Hollywood, Bishop is a true world citizen. She began writing her own songs at the age of seven, and would perform these unfiltered observations about her life to a captive audience: her family. It is now recognized that this precociousness, coupled with her upbringing, would draw a clear line to who she would become.

During her early years in Los Angeles, Bishop hit the pavement; focused and on a clear mission, she was never too proud to play any venue that would have her, often to crowds smaller than would gather in her childhood living room. While many would have given up, not only was Bishop undeterred, but, through her perseverance, every challenge and obstacle provided her with much of the life experience that comes through in her music. Now fine-tuned as a performer, Bishop is an example of what happens when ability meets determination.

Her voice has grit and heft — it is lived-in and unafraid — putting her solidly in the lineage of female vocalists such as Janis Joplin, Florence Welch, Aretha Franklin, and Alabama Shakes’ Brittany Howard. Like those who have left a mark before her, Bishop foregoes restraint and defies categorization, forging a path that is uniquely hers. Though she now sings her own songs in larger, crowded venues, Bishop still performs with the abandon and intimacy of someone addressing a handful of people in a small room. Deceptively composed, Bishop is often only a heartbeat away from howling with joy or being paralyzed by tears. The result is beyond inspiring, and promises to be as much of a transcendent experience for the audience as it is for Bishop.

“Wild Horses” and “River” are singles that present a rising artist who has spent years developing her craft. The emotions are timeless, the sounds are now; “River” juxtaposes the heartfelt, idiosyncratic soul of Jack Garratt and Hozier with the brash, brassy production of Yeezus or TNGHT. Composed in bedrooms, and destined for festival tents and arenas, Bishop claims her music comes from a place of sadness, though it might be more accurate to say it comes from a place of substance. While the words themselves are direct and precise, they encompass grand emotions which are deeply personal yet rendered in a way that invites listeners to project and examine their own experiences; isn’t that what music is supposed to do?

What unequivocally distinguishes Bishop is there is no duality — no difference between Bishop the person and Bishop the artist — they are one in the same. There is no construct or persona, there’s just her. Whether it is the defiance of “Wild Horses” or the rapture of “River,” they are all inspired by what she calls “the biggest, most toxic and tragic love affair I’ve ever had”: her lifelong commitment to music.

Bishop is not offering merely a piece of her heart — she’s giving you the whole thing.