I spent a lot of time during the height of the [redacted] rediscovering some of my childhood favorites, and while it’s not surprising how poorly some of the music of the late 90s and early 00s aged, some bands and styles have turned into rich, decadent spirits all this time later. It’s been 20 years since one of my favorite records, The Artist in the Ambulance came out, and Thrice’s keen marrying of the punchy with the pensive still holds up wonderfully. That spirit lives on in the most promising heavy band of 2023, Young Eyes. Their style feels like a modern interpretation of mid-career Thrice and O’Brother, but with a real sense of musical adventure. Post-hardcore, post-metal, sludge, grunge, and an atmosphere that comes across as a metallic dream pop: all that makes for a wild and wonderful listen for fans of forward-thinking heavy music. All These Steps Lead Us the Wrong Way is a fabulous first step for this exciting new act.
There’s a sense that Young Eyes know who they are already, and that confidence works in their advantage, as guitarist Chris Harrison shares:
“We have all been in our music scene for a long time, and throughout the years we have played many shows together with our other bands. We all come from the same school of music and have a lot of similar tastes in music but also have a lot of different tastes as well that have individually shown in our individual styles and it works. When we write we all trust each other to put our own feel into our parts and I think that makes us such a cohesive unit and makes writing our songs very interesting. We always pictured our record being more than just song to song. We love incorporating different elements of sounds into our songs. That’s what made the studio so fun because we really got to experiment with layering and ambient noises that you can pick out with headphones. To us it is about trying to find that balance. Just like life itself. We know that our songs and our sound is ours. We feel as if we can do anything, and it will sound like us.”
Photo courtesy of Nikita Gross.