Alt-J, Live In Concert The Mercury Prize-winning band from Cambridge, England, capped NPR Music's SXSW showcase in Austin. Watch them dig deep into their one and only album, An Awesome Wave, in front of a packed house.

SXSW Music Festival

Alt-J, Live In Concert: SXSW 2013

Alt-J, Live In Concert: SXSW 2013

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/173426700/175085038" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Alt-J's Joe Newman has a funny way of singing — especially for the uninitiated, it can seem cartoonish or, worse, affected. He bends his high, twisty voice in strange ways, wrapping it around inventive arrangements that burble and boom and otherwise ramp up a sense of unease. The easiest way to embrace alt-J's idiosyncratic charm is to witness the band live; to hear how often Newman sings quietly and subtly, and to get a fuller feel for the prettiness at the core of alt-J's songs.

On Wednesday night at Stubb's, the band dug deep into its one and only album, last year's Mercury Prize-winning An Awesome Wave, and found a sweet spot where odd adventurousness meets beauty that seeps under the skin.

Set List

  • "Intro"
  • "Interlude I"
  • "Tessellate"
  • "Something Good"
  • "Buffalo"
  • "Dissolve Me"
  • "Fitzpleasure"
  • "Matilda"
  • "Interlude II"
  • "Bloodflood"
  • "Ms"
  • "Breezeblocks"
  • "Hand-Made"
  • "Taro"

Credits

Producers: Bob Boilen, Mito Habe-Evans, Robin Hilton, Amy Schriefer; Technical Director: Kevin Wait; Event Coordinator: Saidah Blount; Assistant Producer: Denise DeBelius; Videographers: Christopher Farber, Katie Hayes Luke, A.J. Wilhelm; Audio Engineering by Metro Mobile; Production Assistants: Gabriella Garcia-Pardo, Ryan Smith; Special Thanks to: Stubb's and South By Southwest; Executive Producers: Anya Grundmann, Keith Jenkins.

[+] read more[-] less

More From Rock

Theodore performs a Tiny Desk Concert on March 27, 2019 (Amr Alfiky/NPR). Amr Alfiky/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Amr Alfiky/NPR

Theodore

The music of Theodore is dark and transformative, with the kind of spare elegance you can hear in Sigur Rós or Pink Floyd.

Gary Clark Jr. performs a Tiny Desk Concert on April 1, 2019 (Amr Alfiky/NPR). Amr Alfiky/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Amr Alfiky/NPR

Gary Clark Jr.

These three songs, from Clark's incendiary new album This Land, roar with the assurance and force of a showman at the top of his game.

Weezer performs a Tiny Desk Concert on Feb. 27, 2019 (Amr Alfiky/NPR). Amr Alfiky/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Amr Alfiky/NPR

Weezer

Performing unplugged, the band forgoes its usual meticulousness in favor of a shaggy, entirely acoustic mix of new songs and '90s-era deep cuts.

Alejandro Escovedo performs a Tiny Desk Concert on Jan. 16, 2019 (Claire Harbage/NPR). Claire Harbage/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Claire Harbage/NPR

Alejandro Escovedo

The veteran rocker and a backup band from Italy play songs from their album The Crossing, chronicling an American Dream of rock and roll and Beat poetry.

Meg Myers performs a Tiny Desk Concert on Dec. 5, 2018 (Cameron Pollack/NPR). Cameron Pollack/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Cameron Pollack/NPR

Meg Myers

Myers replaces her album's roaring electric guitars and electronics with a pulsing string quartet, piano and brushed drums — and uncorks a cover of Kate Bush's "Running Up That Hill."

Aaron Lee Tasjan performs a Tiny Desk Concert on Dec. 12, 2018 (Cameron Pollack/NPR). Cameron Pollack/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Cameron Pollack/NPR

Aaron Lee Tasjan

Aaron Lee Tasjan arrived in an ascot and mustard-colored shirt, sporting red, round sunglasses and mutton chops. It was a fashionable nod to the psych-pop and rock sound he brought to the Tiny Desk.

Pedro the Lion performs a Tiny Desk Concert on Sept. 13, 2018 (Claire harbage/NPR). Claire Harbage/NPR hide caption

toggle caption Claire Harbage/NPR

Pedro The Lion

No matter how dark or disastrous, there's always been an undercurrent of grace to the music of David Bazan. He returns to his Pedro the Lion moniker for this memorable Tiny Desk performance.

Back To Top