Anna Cieslik ’16 / Emertainment Monthly Music Editor
For Australian indie band Atlas Genius, making music is about just that: making music. While many bands today fall into the trap of wasting all of their precious energy on marketing themselves, Atlas Genius has a keen understanding of what it really takes to succeed in today’s fast paced music world.
“Too many bands are spending too much time on marketing and trying to network,” Keith Jeffrey, one half of the Aussie band, said in an interview with Emertainment Monthly. Instead, he suggests getting the songs right and the rest will inevitably follow.
Atlas Genius exploded onto the music scene in 2011 when their hit song “Trojans” was discovered by the music blog Neon Gold. Soon after the blog uploaded “Trojans,” record labels from all over the globe began vying for Atlas Genius’s unique sound and the song reached 45,000 sales on iTunes. But the band didn’t rush into anything. Instead, they took their time and carefully examined each label before finally signing to Warner Bros. Records.
“We took a long time to decide,” Keith said. “We had a lot of thoughts and one of the big deciding factors was that [Warner Bros. Records] are really respectful of our wishes to continue recording ourselves.”
Keith admits that having the option to record in a professional studio is nice, but that’s not exactly Atlas Genius’s style. The band, which consists of Keith and his brother Michael Jeffery, actually built their own studio in Adelaide, Australia before they even started playing as Atlas Genius. However, while recording their first full-length album, When It Was Now, the band had to do things a little bit differently. Because of their seemingly never-ending touring cycle, the Jeffery brothers ended up finishing their record on the road.
“We were recording in random hotels,” Keith said of the album, which came out on February 19 here in the US. “It’s fun for a bit, but I would try to finish it all in a studio next time.”
Although these recording conditions weren’t ideal for Atlas Genius, they are still proud of When It Was Now and feel that the record stays true to the band’s sound. “I think musically, [the recording process] didn’t really affect too much,” Keith said of the album. “The song structures were all there.”
While Atlas Genius takes great pride in its music, the band is not too serious to joke around a bit and enjoy the crazy ride they’re on. When asked to describe the band’s sound, Keith simply refers to it as “polished Euro salsa,” after letting out an infectious laugh. He also took some time to recollect on his favorite parts of touring all over the world. Keith said that he most enjoys “getting to see those small country towns and places that you wouldn’t usually see” while on tour. “I really like seeing the nature and small towns,” he said.
The brothers behind Atlas Genius are undoubtedly having the time of their lives right now, but they don’t forget what got them to where they are today – the fans. “Without [our fans] coming to shows, we wouldn’t have a career,” Keith said. “So we’re really thankful.”
It’s clear that the band’s love for their fans is a mutual feeling. With a slew of sold out shows in support of the band Imagine Dragons coming up for Atlas Genius, it looks as if these Aussie darlings of the indie world aren’t going anywhere anytime soon.