When I look back over the last 12 months I think that the thing that really stands out in the music world has been the resurgence of rock music. Rock bands are back in the mainstream, with bands like Royal Blood and Marmozets leading the charge and underneath them there are a plethora of bands putting out quality music. Young and upcoming bands, like Young States.
Coming straight outta Norwich (See, I’m topical) Young States are Georgina Leeder (Vocals, bass) Libby Irons (Guitar, vocals) Amy Jeffery (Guitar) and Molly Draba – Mann. (Drums) Down To You is the band’s debut EP, what a very good debut it is.
Things kick off with lead single No More and I honestly don’t think that this record could have started with anything else. After a slow and short intro the main riff skitters into position kicking the tempo up multiple gears and from there the band never looks back. The vocal is straight to the point and without unnecessary frills; much like the band as a whole and it fits their overall sound really well. No More probably has the strongest chorus on the whole record and the short stripped back section which chills the song out before it fires towards its conclusion gives the tune a good flow. Everything about the song just works really well.
The main riff which opens Feedback seems massively familiar but I have absolutely no idea why. I do love it though and the duelling guitars which follow are a great addition. As a whole the track is slower than the opener but it still packs more than enough punch. Overall it’s more solid than spectacular but you can’t expect every track to knock you out of your seat.
Opening with a great rolling drumbeat Stay provides a little peak into the band’s softer side, as the lead vocal does most of the heavy lifting. Structure wise the song takes rock convention and flips it on its head. The verses are hardly barnstorming but everything strips back for the chorus instead of really taking off as you would expect. It’s hardly an Earth shattering development but it’s small things like that which make the difference.
Final track Passing Time is another one which gets off to a slow start, but then some seriously ass kicking drums hit you in the face as the guitars soar above you and the monster chorus thunders into life. The rolling drums return but with more force than ever and you can really hear the emotion in the powerful vocal through the chorus. The big selling point for me though is the guitar solo; I just wish that throughout the record we could have had more of them!
I like this record a lot. It’s no fills hard rock, and that is right up my street. Gimmicks do my head in, so the fact that you can tell that these guys are all about the music and all about that hard rock vibe is a massive plus for me.
I think it’s one signature chorus or one signature guitar solo away from being perfect. The band are so close! That killer chorus will come with time, they’ll know when they write it, this is their debut after all. And I only mention the guitar solo thing because as well as having the potential to sound awesome, a cracking solo can really give the casual listener something to latch on to. I mean think how many songs have pulled you in via a riff or solo?
Neither of those things are really complaints though, more talking points for the future. Down To You is a cracking record. It’s simple, straight from the gut rock music which hits the mark on pretty much every level. Plus looking further forward, due to their youth, this band has so much potential it’s frightening. I’ve got a good feeling about Young States, definitely one to watch for the future, and in the form of Down To You they are off to a very, very good start.