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This is what music should be about – Gig Review: Gang of Youths @ Frankie’s Pizza

Gang of Youths

Gang of Youths have all the makings of a memorable band: they’ve got great personality, discipline and friendship, but most of all they play straight up music with heart.

Their new album The Positions is curious and unique in concept alone – detailing the emotional reactions and experiences lead singer and guitarist David Le’aupepe had over the course of a four year relationship with a woman who had terminal cancer. So truly, the free album launch party they held at Frankie’s Pizza on Sunday evening was an absolute privilege to attend.

Frankie’s Pizza is the Sydney hub of grunge: it’s a smokey hole in the wall with decent pizza, alcohol served in plastic mugs, band posters from decades ago, and a whole lot of punk rock cred – so it gave a true hard rock feel to the night. It meant that Gang of Youths could easily transition from an indie rock mellow sound to a heavier sound that appears in tracks like “Radioface”:

David’s vocals very much brought to mind The National – emotional and coarse, yet warm and inviting. He exuded calm confidence throughout the set despite the raw content of his songs, which was on show particularly during “Magnolia” – a defiant song about a failed drunk suicide attempt.

And as with any great album launch, Gang of Youths had organised a special guest – fellow Sydney artist Montaigne – to help them sing “Benevolence Riots“. And you know how we feel about Aussies supporting Aussies. It’s always a winner.

Gang of Youths and Montaigne

The band’s gratitude for how far they’ve come made the whole venue feel like it was filled with a fan family, with Dave running to hug everyone in the crowd that he could. It was a special gig, because it could be one of the last of that size they ever play.

To catch Gang of Youths live, grab your tickets to The Positions Tour this May/June before they run out!

By Erin Rooney

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Song of the Week – Benevolence Riots by Gang of Youths

Gang-of-youths-vinyl-garden-song-of-the-week

Today’s Song of the Week may be an oldie (sorta), but it’s most certainly a goodie. This track from Sydney group Gang of Youths draws on a number of indie rock influences from the past decade and delivers an up-to-date yet nostalgic sound.

The repetitive lyrics, husky vocals and distinctive bass rhythm certainly bring to mind The National, and the build in the middle has Arcade Fire written all over it. I mean listen to to the part at 1:55 – you could easily be forgiven for mistaking it for the end of “No Cars Go“:

 

Enjoy this easy tune for your Saturday afternoon. Gang of Youths have played some pretty cool gigs around the place including at FBi Radio’s new live venue and even dropped by triple j for Like A Version, so they’re doing great things. Check it out here, and enjoy your weekend!

By Erin Rooney