Animal Collective got pretty big last year. Perhaps not so in a truly commercial sense, but culturally their influence has been phenomenal. It’s been quite astounding how many bands sounding incredibly similar have sprung up recently (and how many of them are pretty lame) and how many well-established groups have put out songs chock full of heavily reverbed vocals, layered effects and distorted guitar lines, despite not being primarily known for these kind of tunes (Caribou and Baths, probably most notably).
Young Man fall take almost all their cues from the Baltimore boys’ output, and you could level criticisms at them for being derivative, reductive and unoriginal – which would probably be fair – but you also need to take into account a major difference: song-writing. Animal Collective, whilst being forward-thinking and fairly groundbreaking in sound and style, have never really been known for their compositional abilities. On the other hand, Colin Caulfield – Young Man’s songwriter and frontman – seems to have started out writing simple and sweet yet achingly melancholic, blissfully dolorous pop-folk songs (almost akin to a Bradford Cox project) that he’s then treated with the AC soundstyle guide. It’s nothing particularly spectacular, but it’s very, very nice.
Unfortunately he’s not got any videos out and about just yet, other than this one for an Ariel Pink cover:
And follow this link to check out his own tracks on Myspace (Home Alone’s my personal fave):