The Mercury Prize winning, chart-topping alt-J start 2022 with a bang, releasing their electrifying new track HARD DRIVE GOLD, the third song to be taken from their forthcoming album THE DREAM, set for release on 11 February via Infectious Music / BMG.
Hard Drive Gold is a true burst of energy; a spiritual successor to 2014’s Left Hand Free. The song is propelled by a direct and relentless groove, with vocalist Joe Newman finding space to launch into gently subversive lyricism that sends up those looking to make a quick buck from cryptocurrency. The chanted refrain of “Don’t be afraid to make money, boy” increases in force throughout the track, and seems to resemble more of a warning than a celebration.
Speaking about the song, band member Gus Unger-Hamilton says, “Hard Drive Gold is a slightly tongue in cheek song written at what we thought was the height of the cryptocurrency gold rush. It’s the story of the ultimate childhood fantasy, the schoolboy who becomes a millionaire overnight, and the different interactions he has with people in his life from teachers to neighbours. How ironically you interpret its message is entirely up to you …”
The song is accompanied by a video which is Joe Newman’s directorial debut. Across the band’s career Joe has been involved in developing the ideas of several alt-J videos and now with Hard Drive Gold he takes the full step up. The video is co-directed with his partner Darcy Wallace who choreographs for both film and music videos.
Speaking about his involvement in the video, Joe says, “Growing up enjoying cinema greatly, I saw our videos as opportune moments for directors to create stories purely, so the band did not appear in our videos. By avoiding cuts to a band playing in an aeroplane hangar, the audience could focus on the cinema rather than the indie band music video tropes. I had ideas for videos that I passed onto directors to develop, and watching these directors execute some of those ideas inspired me, and now I want to understand and experience the process at a deeper level.”
Hard Drive Gold follows “Get Better” the stirring centrepiece of forthcoming album THE DREAM and “U&ME”, an inspired snapshot of the band’s experiences of playing summer festivals in Australia. Alongside this, they have recently shared news of a huge world tour for 2022 including a run of dates in the UK and Ireland as follows:
Sat 07 GLASGOW Barrowland
Mon 09 LEEDS O2 Academy
Fri 13 MANCHESTER O2 Apollo
Wed 18 LONDON O2 Brixton Academy
Thu 19 LONDON O2 Brixton Academy
Sun 22 DUBLIN Olympia Theatre
Mon 23 DUBLIN Olympia Theatre
Wed 25 BELFAST Telegraph Building
Fri 27 BIRMINGHAM O2 Academy
The band also announced a prize draw to win a Larrivee P-05 guitar, the same model of guitar on which Newman wrote most of THE DREAM and used in the recording of Get Better, which he has inscribed with handwritten lyrics of the song. All proceeds from the draw will go to Plan International – a global children’s charity working in over 50 countries to create lasting equality for girls and protect the rights of all children. Fans can enter the prize draw here.
THE DREAM will be available on CD and 180g vinyl as well as various limited colour vinyl formats. There will also be a limited-edition hardback book CD that reproduces the notebook Joe Newman used to write the album featuring his original handwritten lyrics and drawings. The official artist store also includes merchandise bundles with signed print and exclusive vinyl and cassette formats.