Artist: Youth In Bloom
Record Label: Mayfly Records
Release Name: Shell EP
Release Date: 17/12/14
Shoegazing is Escapism! It’s a modern day, anti-hype, full on emotive, romantic genre of music that offer’s hope in a sad, mad & bad world. It makes you think about life & love and it gives you a way out of all of those dull, moronic, every day, conveyor belt moment’s that life can throw at you. Shoegaze washes over us all in waves of reverb laden goodness. It lift’s the spirit’s on a cold, damp winter’s day and it transport’s you on a sonic wave to someplace warm. You can walk around a busy city with headphones on listening to it’s swirls & flourishes just thinking about life. It’s not just about staring at your shoes, it’s also about reaching for the stars. Every once and a while a bunch of track’s collectively released on an EP or album grab me by the ear’s and throw me around my living room. I’ve said this before and written about it many times, but it’s true! ‘Youth In Bloom’ are a new band to me, & in my opinion they have released a shoegazing masterpiece! Their ‘Shell EP’ seriously need’s to be heard in it’s entirety for people to realise that this resurgent shoegazing scene is not going away easily & every week a new band surfaces with a release that will blow it’s listeners away!
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With an almost ‘Chapterhouse’ like intro, the opening track on ‘Youth In Bloom’s’ debut release ‘Shell EP’ will give you a clear understanding of what this band are about musically. ‘Unwind’ is a sonically immense track with a duel vocal to die for! Listen carefully to the traditional shoegaze production technique’s on the vocal line’s! They are way back in the mix just floating on a sea of bliss & riding a wall of guitar, drum’s & bass. This is heaven.
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‘Crescent Waves’, the EP’s second track, greet’s us with, in my opinion, the only Alt-Rock influenced track on this EP. It explodes on to the musical canvas before opening up with the absolutely stunning vocal line – “Pale blue like dreams of you, Old stories we tell are becoming new, Pale blue like dreams of you, Pleasures of the mind will see you through”. A duel vocal again carries this track on a wave of sonically beautiful tones into the amazing chorus line. Check it out:
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Three track’s in and we’re hit with a shoegaze classic! ‘Finder’ is the bedrock on this immense release. It has all the qualities of a classic gaze track and cements ‘Youth In Bloom’ firmly into the shoegaze genre elite. The drum track alone on this song is worthy of singular praise as it takes us on a four minute 5 second journey through the spirit of shoegaze & it’s many guises. Again, vocally sublime, this band can do no wrong in my opinion and they deserve our respect.
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The dreampop element’s of Youth In Bloom’s sound come to the fore on the brilliant ‘Dismantle’, the forth track on this amazing EP. Opening with the sweetest of vocal’s sitting on top of hauntingly beautiful guitar swell’s, this track remind’s me so much of Irish shoegazing outfit ‘Elastic Sleep’ who record, produce & release similar soundscapes in the dreampop/shoegazing genre. The drums explode with menace and bring the curtain down on a really great track but ultimately it’s all about the vocal. Sublime!
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‘Shrouded’ is the closing track on this EP & in my opinion, ‘Youth In Bloom’ have saved the best for last. This is a stunning piece of music & possibly my favourite track on the ‘Shell EP’. Full of expressive shoegaze qualities & subtle dreampop flourishes, ‘Shrouded’ comes to life after we are introduced to & guided through a Dreampop masterclass into a full on Nu-Gaze heavy hitting classic track. This is stunning in every way and I have to commend ‘Youth In Bloom’ for the way in which they’ve presented this track. It has peak’s & trough’s that are full of swirling sonic goodness & again, that vocal track is to die for! This track alone has everything that I love about the shoegaze/dreampop/nu-gaze genre’s of music & it is also a track that I will keep coming back to again & again.
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Hailing from Williamsport, PA & signed to the immense Mayfly Record’s, another amazing independent record company nurturing the underground gaze scene over in the States with aplomb, ‘Youth In Bloom’ combine shoegaze, nu-gaze, dream pop, & 90′s alt rock to perfection. This EP will appeal to fans of Whirr, Tamaryn, Wildhoney, and Pity Sex but it will also appeal to fan’s of the first wave of shoegaze respectively!
You can check out ‘Youth In Bloom’ for yourselves here:
Del Chaney – The Primal Music Blog – February 2015 – Dublin, Ireland.
Del Chaney has spent the last two years not only fronting popular Irish Electronic duo Analogue Wave, but also dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the Unsigned or Small Independent Label based Shoegaze, Dream Pop, Noise-Rock & Post-Rock genre’s of music from all over the globe & reviewing them for this blog – The Primal Music Blog. His other arm, The Primal Radio Show, has gained considerable respect from band’s and promoter’s alike since it’s conception in 2013 & has hepled him in actively promoting a genre of music that he’s passionate about. He also currently write’s for Canadian based online music webzine www.ReplicantEars.com .Hailing from Dublin, Ireland, he is a keen Vinyl Collector, Tattoo Fan & all round good guy! He is a self confessed music freak & is never far away from a studio console or a turntable.