“Sometimes, I worry I’m whining a whole bunch.” Alexander Biggs wears his heart on his sleeve, and his new EP Still You Sharpen Your Teeth is a testament to that. The six tracks profile challenges, pain, and growth while staying warmly melodic. It’s the sound that Biggs has strived for over the years as an artist.
Making the transition from band member to solo act wasn’t all too difficult for Biggs. It was always something he’d been interested in, but never fully committed to. However, his exposure to the world of a solo artist slowly built up, and soon it became undeniable.
“I eventually realised that things weren’t going to get done, unless I stepped up and did it,” says Biggs. “Seeing people around me succeed, and me just going, ‘Why can’t I do that? What’s stopping me?’ The main catalyst was realising that I was only stopping myself from starting.”
Like many other musicians, Biggs works additional jobs factored in around his music. “As much as I hate it, I feel like it’s necessary to have,” he says. Still, he has weighed up the possibility of committing to music full-time, toying with the idea of leaving work and “living under the poverty line” to produce music. For now though, he’s decided against it, opting to divide up the days between work and his passion.
Though retail isn’t his favourite place to be, Biggs does find solace in his other day job, a caretaking role at a local rehearsal space. “When I’m there, I have a lot of free time to think about my music, so that’s where most of New York came from. [I was] mopping floors and the idea came to my head, then most of the lyrics were done at the end of that shift.”
When it comes down to it, that’s Biggs’ preferred method of writing. “It all comes out in one go, generally, because I think it’s really important to have the phrasing be influenced by the way the guitar, or whatever instrument, is being played.”
The idea of Still You Sharpen Your Teeth began far before Biggs had even released a song. “I’d been wanting to put an EP out for a while, and it’s changed in a lot of ways. It was going to be so different. It’s cool that I waited and we’ve got what’s come out.”
Like a metamorphic rock, the material on Biggs’ EP has evolved over time and pressure. When originally recording the first incarnation of the record, he didn’t think highly of it. “The original EP was really lo-fi, like, really grainy and raw. At the time I was like, ‘This sucks, this is so shit.’”
However, it formed a basis for Still You Sharpen Your Teeth as we now know it, and Biggs looks back on the process nostalgically. “It’s really developed in its own right. Some people would call it shinier, but I think it’s still got a bit of heart to it.”
That’s essentially the premise of Alexander Biggs’ music – raw and unbridled, keeping things as authentic as possible. “Any genre which has a lot of heart to it is something that really inspires me. The writing lies above what they’re saying and how they’re singing it. There’s expression in it.”
In the past, it was difficult for Biggs to be so forthcoming in his songwriting. But that’s something that’s changed over time. “I think it used to be hard. The only time it’s hard now is when I’m worried I’m going to hurt someone with my feelings. But luckily, most of the times I’ve written recently, I haven’t been hurting anyone I care about.”
With the EP now out in the world, Alexander Biggs looks to the future. “I want to put a lot more music out. I’ve got so much content I’m sitting on.” In the meantime, however, live shows will take precedent as he launches Still You Sharpen Your Teeth across the country.