Alt-J’s Joe Newman confirms new solo project

Descending onto the Ivors red carpet, the frontman whets our whistle for an upcoming new musical chapter.

Photo: Emma Swann

It may only be a little over two years since alt-J released fourth album ‘The Dream’, but there’s no rest for the wicked, and vocalist Joe Newman is already working on something tantalisingly new. “We’re taking a bit of a break from the band. We’ve all got families now, so we’re doing the family thing, but I’m going to be doing a solo project,” he tells us, chatting on the Ivor Novellos red carpet last month, before presenting the award for Best Contemporary Song.

Set to see him explore more of an Americana and Motown vibe, he’s been piecing the project together at a more rapid rate than usual, with the help of producer Carlos De La Garza. “I’ve been going to LA to work with Carlos, who just won a Grammy with the newest Paramore album [‘This Is Why’],” he continues. “We really get on, he’s such a great guy and he’s a really talented musician. He’s got a wonderful ear and is a phenomenal producer; we’ve been having some really great times together. We’ve been taking it song by song and I think next year we might release something.”

“I’m really proud of what I’m doing and I hope that our fans will take the leap of faith and listen to what I’m doing too.”

As the first real time Newman has worked away from alt-J since their formation back in the late 2000s, unsurprisingly, it’s been a little odd adapting to not having his bandmates around. “It’s a mixture of emotions really,” he nods. “It can be quite daunting, and you realise just how good you were at delegating roles to each other: Gus [Unger-Hamilton] would be the broadcaster, Thom [Sonny Green] would be the mysterious drummer, and I’d be the writer at large. Now I have to try and do all three of those roles, and it’s a new experience.” New though it may be, however, Newman is clearly embracing the challenge: “I’m ready for it and I’m really excited to release music in my own name,” he says. “I’m really proud of what I’m doing and I hope that our fans will take the leap of faith and listen to what I’m doing too.”

You can hear Joe discuss his plans for a new solo project below, and check out DIY’s TikTok for more from this year’s Ivor Novellos red carpet. 

@diy_magazine 👀 look who’s been working on solo material. Joe @alt-J spills on what he and producer Carlos de la Garza have been up to in LA on the @The Ivors Academy red carpet. #altj #joenewman #inthestudio #getexcitedabout #carlosdelagarza #ivors2024 ♬ original sound - DIY Magazine

Tags: alt-J, News, From The Magazine

As featured in the June 2024 issue of DIY, out now.

Read More

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Stay Updated!

Get the best of DIY to your inbox each week.

Latest Issue

June 2024

With Glass Animals, Los Campesinos!, Alfie Templeman, Lava La Rue and many more.

Read Now Buy Now Subscribe to DIY