An Interview with Atlas Genius: Symptoms, Seinfeld and How to Get on the Tour Bus

Posted by admin on Wednesday, August 29, 2012

3 Atlas Genius Bros

Have you heard the song "Symptoms" by Atlas Genius? Let me enlighten you:



Amazing, right? And if you haven't heard that one, you've surely heard  "Trojans"--or, ya know, you can catch it right here:



The bottom line is that Atlas Genius is a badass band out of  Adelaide, Australia who has been blowing up radio stations--especially my personal favorite, Sirius XM Alt Nation--for months now. And, thanks both to my self-indulgent need to tell the world about good music and to the glories of Twitter, I was recently privileged enough to chat with Keith from Atlas Genius on Friday.

Let's just say he sounds real dreamy.

Now as illustrated before, in fail-worthy interviews with Panic! at the Disco and The Temper Trap, I'm not the best interviewer. I tend to slip into either one of two modes:

1. Ask blatantly cliche questions that no one cares about ("So, like, who are your influences?")

2. Just use up my allotted 20 minutes chatting about unimportant shit ("Yeah, what's the weather like there? Yeah, sunny? Yeah? Cool.")

Now throw in some bad cell reception and an Australian accent that, while insanely sexy, is also really goddamn hard to understand when you have the hearing of a 70-year-old like I do, and what do you get? A bunch of partial quotes. But I can tell you that the band has been together about three years since meeting in Adelaide. Now that they're playing shows around the country, they're spending their off time on the road, listening to Vacationer and Wolf Gang on the tour bus, heading across the country and--at interview time--watching Family Guy.

They're also big Seinfeld fans--and we spent the last 10 minutes of the interview discussing episodes. AKA--they're okay in my book.


And catch them on tour--I'll see you at the Austin show when they play with Wolf Gang on November 9th at The Parish. (Remind me to add that to my list of upcoming AWESOME Austin shows!)

Here we go...


SB: Sooooo...who are your influences?

KJ: Growing up it was bands like The Police, The Beatles...The Strokes. Ya know, it's difficult to put your finger on...


SB: So "Trojans" has been played--umm--everywhere and was hugely praised. Did that change your life? Were you surprised by its success?

KJ: One day we realized it was getting played on the radio station. There were blogs writing about the song and we were surprised because we didn't promote it at all.


SB: So what, exactly, is the song about?

KJ: The song is really about...in a relationship....trying to move on and do the best you can. I think it's really about that point when you're moving on from a relationship--sometimes you're shellshocked at the end of it...what it all meant.


SB: And is it inspired by someone? Do you want to call her out? Let's do it! Right here!

KJ: It is, but I'm not gonna go there...


SB: So now that you're getting big radio play and you're touring, do you have girls throwing themselves at you?

KJ: Wouldn't say throwing themselves at  us...


SB: OK, but hypothetically, how could a girl get herself on the tour bus with y'all? What would she have to do to?

KJ: (laughing) We'd have to get rid of the gear to make  room for starters...they'd have to dig the music for sure.


SB: Do y'all have any vices--any guilty pleasures?

KJ:  We pretty much all share an addiction to coffee.


SB: What about traditions or rituals?

KJ: We do a little huddle to pump each other up--we get together and thank the gods of rock 'n' roll.


SB: So are y'all getting into a routine with the shows? Is it just as exciting as it was in the beginning ?

KJ: It's more exhilarating than ever--getting up there and playing in front of people. It's a really good feeling seeing them knowing the words. A couple months ago in Sacramento we heard there was a line around the block. It was a really fun show, a really good crowd.


SB: So what's next for y'all? You're touring...

KJ: We're touring for the next four months or so and then the album should be coming out. That's gonna be another whole round of shows.


SB: And--I have to ask--are y'all single?

KJ: We have two single guys--two out of four.


SB: Well is there anything you want to leave the interview with? If you were in front of a crowd right now, what would you want to say?

KJ: Thank you for listening to our music--a big thank you. We're excited to get the album out. Hold out a little bit more--the album is coming.



My interview skills aren't quite so polished, and I can't help that I'd rather chat Seinfeld.  But check them out--you'll thank me later!


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