NMM (Revisited): AJR

Photo: Chris White
If you look on the iTunes page for AJR's debut album, Living Room, you'll find no major record label listed. That's because the three brothers that make up this group do everything on their own.

Described as a "DIY pop group" on its website, AJR has its own, awesome style. The trio has a cool mix of electro-pop in its music with very catchy rhythms and lyrics. Since my last post on AJR about a year ago, the band continues to grow in popularity. AJR's debut single, "I'm Ready," has garnered more than 11 million views on YouTube and has sold more than 500,000 copies. The song has also been featured all across the web, including Billboard, the New York Post and right here on Reflections.

AJR is comprised of three brothers from New York: Adam, Ryan and Jack Met. According to the band's website, music has always been a passion for the Met brothers, using money from busking to purchase instruments and equipment. While experimenting, some great sounds began to surface and the trio started recording in their living room with a $99 microphone. AJR still records there today.

In a chat via Twitter on Mar. 4, I asked the guys of AJR about artists who have inspired the band's style and sound. Their response? "[We are] big fans of a lot of hip-hop: Kanye, Kendrick Lamar. Also big Beach Boys fans." Woah, that's a wide range of music! However, it shows just how eclectic the band's inspirations are and that eclectic taste translates into the band's music. Living Room has been on my list of most anticipated albums for quite some time now. After hearing "I'm Ready," I knew the full album would be killer - and it didn't disappoint. The album features a collection of 13 tunes, ranging from a pop sound with "Infinity" to a more subdued and reflective track in "Growing Old On Bleecker Street" - which you can check out in the video above.

Besides the band's unique sound and crazy good artistry, AJR definitely earns my respect for taking the DIY approach. No big wig producers, no record labels and no extra studio musicians. Just AJR.