As a band started in 2010 by a couple of college kids in Oxford, England, Glass Animals has risen from a “newbie band” to one of Hyundai’s Mercury Prize Shortlist finalists in 2017. Composed of four members (David “Dave” Bayley on lead vocals, guitar and tambourine, Andrew “Drew” L. MacFarlane on guitar and keys, Edmund Irwin-Singer on bass and keys and Joseph “Joe” Seaward on drums), the band has performed in over 70 venues and festivals, including Osheaga, Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo and Coachella and has toured twice internationally.
Their most recent album, How to Be a Human Being, is full of nostalgic and aesthetic melodies infused with a blend of 80’s funk and melodrama. The album cover depicts eleven people with (presumably) unique backgrounds told by each of the eleven tracks in the album. Although some tracks blend into others, each mirrors a different person’s story.
The band first released the single “Life Itself” May 16, 2016. The first track from the How to Be a Human Being features a more boisterous, percussion-driven sound that contrasts their previous album, Zaba. “Life Itself” peaked at number 18 on Billboard’s Alternative Songs chart and spent 26 weeks on Sirius XM Alt-18 chart, peaking at number 1.
Bayley (lead vocalist) expressed in an interview that the song was about “a sci-fi obsessed dude who spends most of his time alone inventing strange things and writing stories about ray guns or looking for aliens on Google Maps.” Because of the very specific description, fans were able to pinpoint the character mentioned in the song as the man to the far right of the album cover.
Previous to How to Be a Human Being, Glass Animals’ released their first complete album, Zaba, June 6, 2014, also with a total of eleven tracks. Although it was not as popular as their sophomore album, Zaba peaked at 21 on the Alternative albums Billboard chart. The first track, “Flip” featured a slow ooze of synthesizers and guitar with warm vocals, yet cutting lyrics. “Chopping up the threads made up from looms of love and blood and hate and some empty tunes” sings Bayley.
Becoming more and more popular, Glass Animals is currently touring internationally for their How to Be a Human Being album. You will be able to catch them live on July 24 in Tampa, FL at the Ritz Ybor, July 25 in Miami, FL at the Fillmore Miami Beach and on July 26 in Lake Buena Vista at the House of Blues Orlando.