Atlas Genius creates exciting indie-pop sound with debut album

[pullquote1 quotes=”true” align=”center”]Australian brothers live up to band’s name with much anticipated release[/pullquote1]

BY MAYA HARRINGTON ’16
Contributing Writer

For those of you who haven’t heard, Atlas Genius is a newly-emerged band hailing from Adelaide, South Australia. The group is comprised of the three Jeffrey brothers, Kevin, Steven, and Michael, and their friend and keyboardist Darren Sell.

According to the band’s website, the Jeffrey brothers have a history rooted in music appreciation. Their parents, avid Beatles fans, encouraged the boys to play instruments from an early age. Later on, the boys built their own studio for the band they hoped to create. The studio was built three years before their first song, “Trojans,” appeared on the radio as a result of being discovered by many stations and record labels at the same time. The band members, after recording “Trojans,” had lost some faith in their dream of success in the music world. In fact, that dream was not so extensive; on the Atlas Genius website, one of the musicians was quoted saying they would have been content with a following of only 100 people. After returning to university to pursue more “realistic” careers, “Trojans” was discovered, and the band’s inbox was flooded with emails from interested record labels. They hired a manager, got back to recording and produced their debut album, When It Was Now.

Atlas Genius seems well-schooled in the modern indie-pop genre. The boy-band sound of the vocalists’ voices embodies the qualities of other popular groups such as Phoenix and the Strokes. Blended nicely with some electro-groove influences, the overall compilation is a pleasant experience. The album’s single, “Trojans,” and another track, “Electric,” seem to be the only songs to stick out on their own. Slightly more daring sounds and exciting riffs make these two tracks my personal favorites on the album. The others sit comfortably in the safe-zone of simple electronic beats and light creative guitar riffs. With traits like these, any song is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser. However, Atlas Genius undeniably has their own unique sound that makes them a refreshing break from other groups with a similar approach. All their tracks display individuality and keep the album from stagnating halfway through your first listen.
One track, “Through the Glass,” takes an approach that deviates from the hurried pop feel of the other songs in the collection. Although none of the tracks are overwhelming in that sense, this one in particular utilizes more acoustic guitar and less electronic drum beats. Probably the slowest song on the album, the only thing that does not differ from the rest is the subject of the lyrics. Staying true to most pop music these days, the songs focus mainly on lost love, yearning for love, unnoticed love, etc. But by focusing on the music, it is possible to ignore the clichés (which, unfortunately, are frequent).

[three_fourth]Overall an exciting album in the indie genre, When It Was Now has secured for Atlas Genius a place on top of the alternative charts and seems to be holding steady. The band got lucky with their discovery but the album really is a quality one. Let’s hope they can maintain such original style if they churn out a sophomore project.
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Review Rating:A-
When It Was Now introduces a fresh take on the indie-pop genre.

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Questions? Email Maya at mharring@fandm.edu.

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