And, as it turns out, it wasn’t what Alt-J expected, either … though, as they explained to MTV News at this past weekend’s Governors Ball, what struck the Brit art rockers most wasn’t Goulding’s simmering re-working of their track, but rather, just how courteous she was about the whole thing.
“Well, Ellie’s a fan of the band, and that’s really nice, and she emailed me, sent me a message on Facebook or something just saying ‘Oh, I’ve done a cover of ‘Tessellate,’ what do you think of it?’” keyboardist Gus Unger-Hamilton said. “I played it for everyone else and I thought it was really cool. Ultimately, it was nice of her to, in a sense, ask permission! She could have just done it and it would have been fine!”
Of course, Goulding also released a black-and-white video to accompany her cover, which is about as far removed from Alt-J’s edgy, thugs-n-mean-mugs clip as you can get. But not according to Alt-J themselves; they see Goulding’s vid more as a spiritual sequel to their original.
“I don’t think the video is that different, really I feel like our video is quite raunchy, and there’s a certain raunchiness to her video, too,” Unger-Hamilton said. “I think it’s cool, I like Paris, I like black and white, so in that sense, it ticks a lot of boxes that I like.”