Geometry with alt-J

August 29th, 2020

I guess I should lead off with warning you that I was horrible at geometry in school.  Calculus I could do pretty well but something about me and shapes just weren't friends.


Ya know those moments where someone says something and it just kinda hits you in the face so hard and changes your perception of something forever?  I had one of those moments with Paul from The Bar a few weeks ago.

I guess since I've mentioned him on air a few times, I should explain who Paul from The Bar is.  Basically take Jack Skellington but have him originate from Christmastown (maybe a bar in Christmastown???) and you have Paul from The Bar.

So as I was saying, Paul from the Bar, our friend Rachel, and I were watching some British tv show and an alt-J song came on.  Then, out of nowhere, Paul from The Bar says, "why does every alt-J song sound like geometry".  My eyes grew wide, my jaw dropped, my mind was blown...not just because he was actually right about something music related for once...but because I was listening to what geometry sounds like.

Which then got me thinking, if alt-J sounds like geometry, which geometric shape is every alt-J song?  Naturally some science (math?) needed to be done here.  After careful consideration of their 2017 album, Relaxer, this is what every song off of that record is geometrically.  Now for you math people out there wondering which geometric proof I used to determine my answers, I used the following:

1.) I am Bailey

2.) Bailey is always right

3.) Bailey said so

4.) Therefore, what Bailey says is right

I didn't make the rules, science (math?) did.


"3WW": Hexagon

Proof - There is this snappy riff peppered throughout the song that has six changes, or points, in it like a hexagon.

"In Cold Blood": Dodecahedron

Proof - This is my favorite song off of the record and a dodecahedron is my favorite shape.

"House of the Rising Son": Sphere

Proof - There have been a bunch of covers of "House of the Rising Son" so it's neutral but classic, kinda like a circle.  However this cover has a little more dimension to it so it's a sphere.

"Hit Me Like That Snare": Parallelepiped

Proof - Cowbells are parallelepipeds and there's a cowbell played on this track.  And cowbells are effin AWESOME!!!

"Deadcrush": Rhombus

Proof - There's something incredibly smooth but a little slidey about this tune.  So it's a rhombus.

"Adeline": Cube

Proof - Well it's kinda sad and emotional enough that I'm trapped in a box of emotions.  And boxes are cubes.

"Last Year": Square

Proof - Got even sadder and more emotional to the point where the cube just collapsed into a square.

"Pleader": Ellipse

Proof - This track has a kind of interesting elegance to it but also a feeling of going around and around on a track.  So it's an ellipse.


Wanna talk more geometry?  Follow me on social media!  Instagram/Twitter: @saileybandin