Alistair James, ‘Just Getting Older’ Review

Alistair James is a singer/songwriter from Middlesbrough who hadn’t initially planned to go solo following his band’s split before 2013 but as fate would have it, with a small independent record deal under his belt, he soon began writing and playing again. Alistair has had an incredible few years with recieving praise from Mark Plati who has previously worked with David Bowie, Prince and The Cure as well as working with Mark at Mission Sound, Brooklyn. Mission Sound has welcomed bands such as Arctic Monkeys and Mumford & Sons.

James has also assembled a band and played a range of renowned festivals such as Tramlines and Stockton Calling. In  May 2013 he even  secured two support slots for Miles Kane in Sunderland and Middlesbrough before being offered the rest of the tour playing York, Birmingham and Manchester. Miles described Alistair as “a phenomenal talent”.

‘Just Getting Older’ opens with a punchy, hard-hitting guitar riff which is repeated throughout the entire song lending quite a mature and heavy tone accompanied by lyrics reflecting a similar vibe. ‘So if you see me then look the other way’ and ‘how dare you waste my time and put my life on the line’ are just two of many blunt and snappy one liners which leave the impression on the listener that Alistair has written this particular song to express a feeling of loathing and moving on. Alistair has taken inspiration from “hearing stories about con artists who have ‘pulled one over’ on people” and his own experiences with dealing with people of a similar nature that he had to get it off his chest.

Alistair’s vocals are incredibly strong and this is most evident in the chorus of “I’m just getting older now I’m just getting older” especially with “won’t waste my breath, to refine you”. The cheekiness and the obvious attitude is sustained throughout to create a huge sounding track which you could imagine singing along to with your mates on a Friday night. Alistair’s vocals are perfectly complimented by the simple but genuinely effective female backing vocals which slightly lighten the chorus with harmonies adding an element of sophistication. Just Getting Older then plunges you into an energetic, dynamic guitar solo which portrays roots of older classic rock, immediately winning me over.

As I’ve previously suggested, ‘Just Getting Older’ displays a strong feeling towards the end of being messed around and as Alistair puts it, “there’s no point wasting your breath trying to find out why people like con artists and time wasters do what they do because they’ll never change and at the end of the day life goes on. We’re all just getting older”.

Listen to ‘Just Getting Older’ here…