I had heard of Young the Giant only in name by the time one of my friends gave me his endorsement of the band. In fact, he had dug the group’s self-titled debut so much, that he had already bought a ticket for their Chicago show in late February.
Normally, that might prompt me to immediately check out what I was missing. But this friend‘s musical tastes are slightly askew from mine. A lot of times, he gets really into bands that I only have a passing interest in — and vice versa.
If one was to chart our musical interests, it would look something like a pair of sine waves, a quarter-cycle out of phase. Kinda like this.
Eventually, I listened to one of Young the Giant’s songs — “Cough Syrup” — on the radio and liked what I heard.
Upon downloading the full album, I was pleasantly surprised by the collection of tunes. The five-piece from Irvine, Calif., churns out music as eclectic as the ethnic backgrounds of its members — Indian, Persian, British and French-Canadian among them.
Built on a foundation of melodic indie rock, the band adds layers of pop and electro to varying degrees. It also does a good job of mixing tempos throughout the album.
Some of the standout tracks include “Apartment”, “God Made Man”, “Garands” and “Guns Out”, the slow, somewhat dreamy closer.
On a couple of tracks — “St. Walker” and, to a lesser extent, “I Got” — I couldn’t help but think of Fall Out Boy, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
But my favorite track was definitely “My Body”.
After listening to the album a few times, I think I could be talked into joining my friend at the concert in a few months.