ALISTAIR
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ALISTAIR

Phoenix, AZ | Established. Jan 01, 2018

Phoenix, AZ
Established on Jan, 2018
Band Rock Alternative

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Still working on that hot first release.

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As teens, members of alt-rock band Alistair played together in a myriad of configurations, exploring a variety of genres. It would be processing heartbreak that focused the guys, and galvanized the Phoenix, Arizona-based quintet into forging a signature, urgently-emotive sensibility that fuses 1980s new wave and 1990s alt-rock with a sleek modern rock sensibility. Today, the quintet releases its aptly-titled debut, Love and Other Human Vices, featuring the singles “Sin City,” “Metro,” and “Chasing New Lows.”

 

 “As we wrote this record, the message we wanted to get across was you’re not alone—it’s okay not to be okay and embrace what makes you human,” shares Nick Antonucci.

 

Alistair is Collin Bashaw lead vocals/songwriter, Nick Antonucci guitar/songwriter/vocals, Jack Croom guitar/producer/songwriter, Jake Randall bass/vocals, and Jared Denham drums. The guys are in their early 20s, and band bonds reach back to high school. The five-piece band’s name is Gaelic, and translates to mean defender of mankind which speaks to the quintet’s desire to connect and uplift.

 

Alistair fuse the wall-of-sound artiness of bands like The Cure, Smashing Pumpkins, My Bloody Valentine, and Sonic Youth with a contemporary, passionate, pop-rock perspective. Within their songs, the band grapples with issues of substance abuse, toxic relationships, isolation, and sexual aggression. The quintet’s debut is 100% DIY with their guitarist Jack producing and mixing alongside the aid of lead singer Collin—both have certifications in audio engineering.

 

The Alistair guys set out on their musical journey as high school kids exploring prog-rock, and playing in cover bands. Early on, Collin’s heart was more into the arty, accessible, and vulnerable sounds of the 1980s and the 1990s, and, eventually, it was Nick who suggested the burgeoning band shift to a music that was more emotionally visceral and aligned with Collin’s tastes which he also shared.

 

Central to this transformation was Nick getting out of a toxic relationship, and reaching out to Collin who he knew had gone through the same turmoil years before. Throughout the summer of 2018, the two bonded over their shared experiences with heartache and a mutual love of new wave and alt-rock. Each day they wrote together, and in three months the pair had almost written a complete record.

 

The resulting 9-song album is darkly cathartic. The songs are richly layered with textural touches of Nick and Jack’s guitar playing. This alt-rock and dark wave interlace is fortified by the meaty support of the rhythm section. Within this sonic tapestry, Collin’s vocal melodies shine through with a pop sensibility that’s both infectious and vulnerable.

 

Standouts on Love and Other Human Vices include “Ad Nauseam,” “Bottom Of The Well,” and “Attention Span.” The track “Ad Nauseam” boasts otherworldly effects-laden guitars juxtaposed against a driving beat. Here, Collin’s yearning vocals ooze through the new wave-guitar rock orchestration almost like another instrument or texture, recalling My Blood Valentine dense sonic thicket. “Bottom Of The Well” balances an ambient sensibility with an anthemic one. “That song is about hitting rock bottom, and it sends a positive message about rebuilding yourself,” Nick says. The track “Attention Span” conjures a sprawling ambient art-rock vibe that recalls The Cure. It’s an intimate window into a personal struggle with depression and anxiety.

Band Members