One of the UK’s most electrifying and prolific young bands, Young Guns, began making their mark on the US in a huge way, beginning with the release of their anthemic single, “Bones” in February of 2012. What you may not know is that they’ve been hard at work since 2005, fleshing out 3 EPs and 3 full-lengths since their inception and bringing the masses one of the most explosive, exhilarating live shows that you’ll experience in the genre. Ever-hungry for how much they can do for the scene, though, they are far from done yet. Recently released, their 4th studio album Echoes just goes to show that they have just as much fire in them as they had over a decade ago, when their journey began. The follow-up to 2015’s Ones and Zeros, Echoes showcases the band’s best work yet, on all fronts.
“Bulletproof” opens the album with their signature clean electric guitar tone, as vocalist Gustav Wood’s charismatic style resonates through your speakers. The verses are a bit bouncy, catching your ear and will have you singing along. The chorus is when the band explodes, in full force. Building up to a faster-tempo in the bridge, it gives you plenty to keep your ears busy. The track is about overcoming adversity and those negative people who constantly say you can’t do something. The album continues to build the listener up, from track to track, until it climaxes in the form of “Awakening,” which begins slow but is easily one of the most explosive and atmospheric tracks within. As was always their intent, the band conveys every shred of emotion to the listener, who is taken through a journey of self-discovery and musical exploration, the likes of which has seldom been seen. The band calls attention to the distress of the world, as a whole, through the album’s 2nd single, “Mad World.” If “Bones” was the band’s anthem prior to this album, it quickly becomes clear that “Awakening” will replace that. A beautiful build-up from a slow, electronic and somber start, once this track kicks in, it will be stuck in your head for days upon days.
“Mercury In Retrograde” is the album’s next really high point. This track tells the story of two lovers, one of whom begins to see the other change. It’s a reminder that people change, whether you want them to or not. Some of these changes can be good, some can be bad… but it’s inevitable and you have to get used to or prepare for it. This track has a strong electronic element, bringing the astronomical references within to life. It will feel to the listener that they’re floating through space, as you see something once beautiful, slowly decaying but you can still see the beauty deep within. If you’re a fan of the ballad-like tracks that Young Guns has released in the past, you’ll find yourself clinging to “Paradise.” A beautiful, piano-driven and melodic song, it has tons of emotion to spare and may even have the listener shedding a few tears. The album closes with “Afterglow” which settles into a more pop-like element than any of the previous tracks. This poppy flavor, combined with the perfect amount of atmosphere and electronics brings it to life and keeps you listening until the end.
Whether you’ve been a fan since Mirrors, All Our Kings Are Dead, Bones, Ones and Zeros or are just discovering them, Echoes is the point where you’ll find yourself really embracing the band. A beautiful mixture of everything they’ve done, along with some surprises to keep you guessing, this album has set the bar for bands in their genre and I’m sure these guys will seek to continue that with their next effort. Be sure to pick up your copy of Echoes, out now on Wind-Up Records! The band is currently on their US Fall tour w/special guests and you can check dates/purchase tickets on their website below.
“Bulletproof” (Official Music Video)
“Mad World” (Official Music Video)
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Young Guns is:
Gustav Wood – Vocals
John Taylor – Guitar
Fraser Taylor – Guitar
Simon Mitchell – Bass
Ben Jolliffe – Drums