Youth Salute ‘Carve’ EP Review

Wow, just wow. If you’ve kept up to date with the site, then you’d know of our praise towards this group. Each single we have heard up to this point, has blown us away. We actually feel a little stupid having to call this group an independent group, when their sound is so professional. It’s an absolute crime that these guys aren’t signed to a major label yet. Each time I hear one of their tracks or EP’s it makes me chuckle because when thrown into the batch of independent music we listen to, they stick out like a sore thumb. They sound like a ready-made hit machine, I can’t emphasise the professionalism enough. Back onto point however, what did we think of the full EP? With two great singles to live up to, this EP certainly had high expectations. So let’s cut the chat and dive into this review.

If you couldn’t tell by my wow’s earlier, this EP is unbelievably good. It hits every check on our list and again makes us ask how these guys aren’t signed yet. Each song sounds like it would fit in a Kerrang playlist perfectly; in fact I don’t understand how it isn’t on repeat yet. There are moments of technicality, moments of emotion, moments of wittiness; the EP has it all. Each track on here feels relevant, it feels needed and qualitative; there is no filler at all on the entire record. In fact there are a few tracks on this thing, that I will be re-listening to for the rest of this year no doubt, they’ll be on my phone and on my laptop in a jiffy. When you can influence a reviewer in that way, then you’re clearly something special.

The production on this EP is mouth wateringly good. I hope to heck that they stick with this producer on future records because he has their sound down to a tee. The guitars sound rough and aggressive, the drums powerful and explosive, the bass deep and thunderous, and the vocals almost haunting. Rock has taken a battering from over production this year, and these guys have fought back excellently. I began to lose hope after the Blink album that came out this year, but these guys have rekindled my passion for rock music. There are no pop cliches or tropes in this track, everything is bare-bones and fearsome. Heck, even the softer vocals hit pretty damn hard on big speakers.

The musicality on this record is more than plentiful. The guitar in particular had moments of songwriting genius. You could tell that there is a little prog influence in here for sure. There are melodic tapping sections, there are frenetic guitar harmonies, heck I couldn’t tell whether I was listening to a rock group or an instrumental group at times. Now that doesn’t mean that the drums, bass and vocals didn’t shine. In fact, it’s the opposite. The strength of the guitar allowed the other elements to sound powerful as well in the mix. Some of the drum fills are so creative and are so well executed that it felt like they had a professional drummer come in and record it himself. Also I love how the beats change mid section every now and then too creating different dynamics that keep you on your toes. The bass follows the guitar for the majority of the album but it definitely backs up the low end well, filling out the stereo field with a very rich texture. The vocals follow variant melodies that are so catchy, that even if I don’t remember the lyrics, I remember the sequence and end up humming it all day anyway. Songs like ‘Daze’ and ‘Four Arms’ surprised me massively actually becoming my favourites off the record purely because of how well they are written; ‘Four Arms’ is an absolute gem.

Lyrically, each song is strong from start to finish. You can believe every word that is being sung and you do somewhat connect with each lyric. It reminded me of when Moose Blood first hit on the scene with these very personal and obscure lyrics; that’s a huge compliment. There is no sibilance on the record whatsoever which can be difficult to pull of on a rock record due to the naturally high treble rates.

Overall then I can’t sing this EP’s praises enough, it blew me away. In my opinion, this should be the EP that gets the group signed and I would be shocked if it didn’t. They could hit big overseas easily too with a universal appeal that is hot at the moment. We urge you to check out this EP and add it in for your playlist today, you won’t regret it.

G Rating: 8/10 – One of the best rock albums let alone EP’s to come out this year no doubt.

I Rating: 9/10 – This EP is the independent EP of the year so far, it’s going to take something special to knock it off of the top spot.

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