SLU grads rock out at the Firebird


Allie Caruso / Contributor

The Youngest, a fresh new indie band, took the stage at the Firebird last Thursday, Oct. 16. The band includes two recent SLU grads: Andrew Taetz who graduated in 2011, and John Quinn who graduated in 2013. Before his days in The Youngest, Quinn spent his time at SLU playing in various cover bands at popular bars in St. Louis, such as Great Grizzly Bear and Broadway Oyster Bar.

Hailing from across the country, the band formed in early 2014 through a network of mutual friends. Coming from a range of different jobs and college majors, each member shared a strong passion for making music and decided to give it a shot. Though the tough reality of the music industry is ever present, the band is dedicated and ready to give the band all their effort.

“You just have to jump in the water feet first and hope you don’t sink,” said singer Kathryn Benz.
Settling down on a ranch in La Grange, Texas, The Youngest began working together. They’ve spent the last six months in Nashville writing and recording their debut album, “Feral Road”.

Allie Caruso / Contributor
Allie Caruso / Contributor

It is difficult to pinpoint the type of music The Youngest plays. Their sound dips into many different genres that can appeal to a variety of different audiences. They play a bit of rock, folk, country, and blues. Their music can be related to artists like The Lumineers, Bon Iver, and the Head and the Heart.

The Youngest, though, brings a unique whimsical presence to their music. “Feral Road” is filled with catchy tunes that are perfect for a drive in your car with the windows down. What makes The Youngest stand out is their blend of voices on different tracks. This can be most seen in the song “To the Stars, or Whoever.” Benz and Taetz sing a remarkable and memorable slow duet.

For Benz, singing has been an important part of her life since she was a little girl. She used to sing songs in her car, and one day her mom pointed out to her that she had a good voice. Benz took up singing lessons and sang in church choir. She adds her soulful voice to tracks like “Our Town” and “Gone Before You Know.”

The Youngest’s talent extends beyond their songs. They have a great stage presence too. They are all upbeat, witty, and crowd-pleasing. They even did a cover of MGMT’s “Electric Feel” to get the audience up and dancing at the Firebird show. Many friends of Quinn and Taetz attended the show, making it feel like a fun reunion.

The Youngest is definitely a band you should check out. Their album “Feral Road” is available on iTunes. Give them a listen, and be sure to see them the next time they’re in town.