Reaching New Levels with Young Rival and “Elevator”

Young Rival Young Rival

The Ontario based band called Young Rival recently played at L’Esco. Their dynamic performance served as recollection of their previous work and additional promotion of their new material being released this upcoming month. Sitting down with the band, they expressed how in their creative process they have “changed it up” in regards to the forthcoming records and accompanying videos. The trio are excited for their new songs’s debut, and from the sound of it listeners and fans alike should be too.

Young Rival

Young Rival

Zoe Schultz (ZS): Let’s start from the beginning, where and how did you guys meet?

Noah Fralick (NF): We grew up in Hamilton, so we’ve been together for probably around four years. We just grew up together and met John through mutual friends.

ZS: From the last two albums, your EP and “Stay Young” have been related to a lot of artists raging from The Strokes to the Beach Boys. What artists or sound would you claim to be a major influence for your own music?

Aron D’Alesio (AD): I think somebody once compared us to the Sex Pistols meets the Beach Boys, which I thought was, “oh.” We definitely have more a rough side and we also have a melodic sort of pop element to what we do. I thought that was a very different comparison. A lot of our influences come from interesting and old guitar records.

Young Rival at the L'Esco. Photo Zoe Schultz.

Young Rival at the L’Esco. Photo Zoe Schultz.

ZS: Would you say you have different influences for different albums?

John Smith (JS): I don’t think we can really pinpoint a couple bands that we would listen to for one album. Our scapegoat answer for that question is good music in general. We hear something we like and by nature it creates an influence.

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ZS: You’ve just released your new single “Elevator.” I’ve been listening to it non-stop! So, what do you feel was the motivation behind it? I feel it is different from your previous work. Is that what you intended to create?

AD: We just did “Four Newtons” and we aren’t sure how we are going to release them yet. But with every release you do and every new thing that we do, you change things up. You are always growing and always trying new things in the studio and we definitely fooled around with more production.

JS: I don’t mean to say that we haven’t ever done this before, but it is one of the few times that we really took our time with each song. We did four tracks and we spent as much time as we wanted to on each song until we felt it was done and moved on to the next one. As opposed to doing an album, typically for us it would be like, you go to the studio, get all the drums and the bass. Lay down and make tracks then build on top of that. Sometimes you’re working on songs simultaneously but this is more so trying to focus on a song at a time.

ZS: On your site you are promoting new songs that are expected to be released this spring. What should your fans be excited about or expect from your new material?

JS: We’re really excited about these new songs. There are two new songs were officially releasing. With each song we are working on a video in the meantime, so we are going to have three new videos. The first one should hopefully coming out in the next couple weeks. It has been a fun process to balance the song release with the video content too, its a fun and creative outlet. We’ve had a fun time working on it.

ZS: I can’t get over you music video for “Two Reasons.” It was the craziest and wackiest thing I’ve seen in a long time. What inspired you to create such a video?

JS: Randomly came across it. The guy’s name is James Kuhn and he is an artist from Michigan. I completely stumbled upon it in a flickr gallery online one day and I was just clicking through it. The idea just dawned on me to reach out to him and saw a youtube video he had. I thought it would be cool if we had him involved in a video, so I just reached out to him with a bunch of back and forth emails. He was up for the collaboration and he would paint his own face and lip synch the songs, then send me the video. That’s how it came about, he is a very talented guy.

Young Rival at the L'Esco. Photo Zoe Schultz.

Look Vibrant at the L’Esco. Photo Zoe Schultz.

Concert Review of Young Rival

At 10:30 opening act, Look Vibrant took the stage. Faces painted like preparing for war, they picked up their guitars and drum sticks as weapons and dove into a chaotic combination of vocals, furious strumming and keyboard playing. Midway through the performance the pianist demonstrated some crazy footwork on stage. The front row quickly did the same and busted out their own moves. The guy in front of me, immersed in his own dancing bubble was having the time of his life. Throughout the performance the alternation and synchronization of high vocals, eccentric piano, and fast paced drumming kept the crowd vigorously shaking heads and up on their feet.

Look Vibrant steps down and Young Rival commences into a regular and catchy rhythm with their distinct style of garage rock and pop-beachy vibes. After easing in, the band progresses through their well known singles of their last album including Black is Good and Two Reasons. After some energized guitar shredding and power vocals, Young Rival turns the tide, producing a coastal and serene resonance that renders the crowd into a unified body as it sways back and forth. The band marked the ending of their show with their new single Elevator and their own cover from The Deadly Snakes. Elevator is played without it’s echo-electronic characteristic sound, blending with the tone of past records and the rest of the performance . Overall, Young Rival is able to fluctuate its sound that break away from their traditional genre, yet all the while maintained a feel-good atmosphere for the entire evening.

Young Rival and Look Vibrant played L’Esco on April 26, 2014.