Young the Giant rocks the Pageant

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Young the Giant rocks the Pageant

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When I was properly introduced to the world of indie music, I perused through a large selection of bands. Some bands had loud sounds from the electric guitar and synthesizers, others with soft, acoustic melodies. But one band that has the perfect blend of both, creating timeless tracks, is Young the Giant.

This five-piece group, consisting of Sameer Gadhia as lead vocalist, Jacob Tilley  and Eric Cannata on guitar, Payam Doostzadeh on bass guitar and Francois Comtois on drums, flawlessly proved their ability to create an album compiled with various layers of sound brought together by a true and honest theme in their most aspiring project yet, “Home of the Strange.”

The 12-year-old band was created after passionate lead vocalist Gadhia dropped pre-med at Stanford to pursue music. The group explored their sound in their first two albums but told their own story in their latest album, “Home of the Strange.” Each band member found their new home here in the melting pot of America.

For example, Gadhia is an Indian-American, which most people don’t know. Their stories about their new home, termed as the “Home of the Strange,” are told in the album of the same name and are emphasized in the piece “Amerika,” which was inspired by Franz Kafka’s novel of the same name. With noticeably expressive lyrics, Young the Giant creates the character “Titus” in “Titus Was Born,” who goes to find his place in “Amerika” while embracing the uniqueness of his identity. Young the Giant flawlessly delivers a message to all listeners through the underlying narrative and the timeless tracks from the album.

Young the Giant played a sold-out show at The Pageant this past Thursday to an ecstatic crowd. The concert started with Ra Ra Riot hyping us up with the tunes “Water,” “Absolutely” and “Dance With Me,” just to name a few. The mosh pit started jumping around to the riffs of guitarist Milo Bonacci and the strong voice of Wes Miles. What made the sound truly unique was the chamber feel supplied by violinist Rebecca Zeller. The sound was also enhanced by bassist Mathieu Santos and drummer Kenny Bernard.

After the audience was all riled up by Ra Ra Riot, Young the Giant unfailingly continued the passionate atmosphere with the first drum hit of “Jungle Youth.” Throughout the song, the band brought out their eccentrically vibrant side with Gadhia’s free-spirited dance moves in his bright orange jumpsuit. From there, the band mesmerized the audience who sang along to each song. A great mix was played from the belting of “Something To Believe In” and “Silvertongue” to the beautiful harmonies of “Elsewhere,” “Titus Was Born” and “Art Exhibit,” which began with the same ukulele solo performed in their “Art Exhibit” video from their “In the Open” series. The special part of all these compositions when sung live is that they are very true to the recordings, and the changes that are made live are subtle ones that elevate the ambience.

Even though many of the songs are very direct when pushed by the beats of the drum and riffs of the guitar, the elegant harmonies in the upper register are placed in the right places, which creates even more of an impact.

These memorable melodies were what created the passion and love at the concert. The band took it back with some old favorites like “Mind Over Matter,” “Cough Syrup” and “Apartment.” Gadhia asked everyone to take out the flashlight on their phone or lighter, during their song “Firelight,” creating a heartfelt bond between the audience.

The highlight of the concert, though, was when a couple got engaged during the song “Crystallized.” The concert ended on a strong note with everyone singing to their most popular hit “My Body.”

Young the Giant is a unique band in the sense that they compose music to tell a tale that is carried transparently through the layers of Gadhia’s passionate voice. Each piece is composed in such a way that each person is able to feel the emotions that the band had when writing it.