Pumpehuset, Copenhagen, DEN - 13/3
A Youthful Dream
Written by: PP on 12/02/2017 19:09:41
Vibrant Danish garage punkers Yung caught our ears already on debut album "Falter" back in 2014 where they channeled the punk-laden energy of The Distillers into a grungy, post-punk oriented amalgamation of the 90s rock scene in a nutshell. But where the debut smelled a little too much like Nirvana worship in places, 2015's "These Thoughts Are Like Mandatory Chores" EP started a gradual stylistic shift towards a soundscape characterized by punk undertones but one that was distinctly garage rock. That progress continues on sophomore album "A Youthful Dream" where the band finally come into their own.
In practice, Nirvana references have been dropped, replaced by influence from the (British) indie rock scene. As a result, the sound has become cleaner and more deliberate, though vocalist Mikkel Silkjær Holm still tears his throat away on more than one occasion throughout the album. "Uncombed Hair" is a good example, where the band draws equally much from The Strokes' more experimental material. Playful melodies, treble-charged guitars and plenty of melodic distortion combined for the perfect buzz within their expression that's as upbeat as it feels vitalized. Together with opener "The Hatch", it feels like they are natural successors to the EP tracks from the previous year. "Commercial" is driven by a smooth bass line, coarse vocals and punk-ish guitars that make for a good listen for any Fucked Up and Cloud Nothings fans that's for sure.
Elsewhere on the album, the aforementioned indie rock influence starts to push Yung's expression into a different direction altogether. The experimental and minimalistic "The Child", or the laid back semi-acoustic "Morning View" are both examples where the band sounds too clean and uninteresting for their own good. Sure, you can argue they give the album variety, but they are simply not in the same league as songs like "Pills". They are simply unmatched by the latter's buzzing energy and slightly off-tune delivery that captures the charming nature of Yung's music in such a good fashion.
Fortunately, the upbeat garage rockers outnumber the quieter tracks. It's a worrying trend, however, so whether that will still be the case on the new album is a cause of concern for Yung fans. As it stands today, however, "A Youthful Dream" is still a raw, energetic piece of garage rock that's a must have for Danish fans of the genre.
Download: Pills, Uncombed Hair, The Hatch, Sound Of Being OK
For the fans of: Fucked Up, Cloud Nothings, The Strokes
Release date 10.06.2016
Fat Possum Records