June 2002 • Rockbites Alternative Daily

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Young People snicker at fashion police on debut
27 June 2002
This is not your father’s avant-garde.

I’ve often wondered over the years what it would sound like if some artist came up with a completely new take on pop that shattered expectations along with fashion to define a new musical topology, for current times, the way King Crimson or Faust or Wire did with their debut albums. I think that’s what I’m hearing with the self-titled debut by minimalist post-folk trio Young People.
    A first listen to this LP, with its plaintive female vocals floating above apocalyptic but arty destruction, might lead you to think novelty, one-trick-pony, repetitive punch-line. But hah! The joke would be on you. Young People have defined not only a sound sans pareil but a wholly new landscape on which to construct their fantastical, porous, prickly, luminescent song sculptures.
    It’s very easy to not get it, partly because these guys don’t give you any clues (which, after all, would just get in the way of the music) and partly because the superficial points of reference—sad folk music and avant-garde noise-guitar noodling—are just used, rather mercilessly, as components in something much stranger than the combination would suggest.
    Jeff Rosenberg (Pink And Brown, Lumen, Tarantel) founded Young People after he relocated to LA from San Francisco. For his new band he recruited ubiquitous guitarist Jarrett Silberman (The Get Hustle, The Uphill Gardeners, The Hansel And Gretel Disease Forest, The Sound Of The Soil, The Jews; and owner of LA’s The Smell club) and vocalist/dancer Katie Eastburn (previously in LA’s The Janet Pants Dans Theater group).
    Together this ensemble brings cello, violin, guitar, organ, drums, and vocals to the table in combinations and presentations whose seeming simplicity cum weirdness belies sublime beauty and nubile freshness. Give it the chance it deserves and you may well acquire the taste.
    And now for something completely different: ladies and gentlemen, it’s Young People. Five bites out of five.

Rockbites ratings  5: life changing, 4: stunning, 3: captivating, 2: amusing, 1: annoying.

Young People’s self-titled debut came out 4 June on Olympia, Washington’s 5 Rue Christine label. They have a few more dates left on their current US tour—check their Website for details. | Young People | | YP on Kill Rock Stars | | Dishwashing Song (MP3) | | CD from Amazon US | | top of page |


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