Young///Savage - NEW FLESH (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Young / / / Savage

NEW FLESH (2011)

Death To False Hope

Once upon a time in the English language a single slash indicated a comma and two slashes indicated a dash. I can't really seem to identify any specific meaning for three slashes but if a comma is used to avoid linguistic ambiguity via separation and a dash is designed to emphasize a strong connection between words you can sort of see what it may imply in this here band name. For their first proper release, NEW FLESH, Young///Savage shows a great love for traditional post-punk stylings in the vein of Drive Like Jehu, but there is also a heavy lean toward noodly post-hardcore acts like Minus The Bear or Look Mexico. There is an interesting blending of hyphenated genres that normally might sit along side each other rather than on one another's lap. Perhaps that extra slash means nothing more than a way to differentiate the band from the hip-hop act Young Savage or the other way the band is sometimes written Young;Savage. Whatever the case is, this EP is really quite good.

The rhythm-centered songwriting and melancholic vocals will be quite familiar to anyone who familiar with anyone that gets on even an occasional post-punk kick but the way that is blended with the bright downright beautiful guitar playing takes you by surprise. These things are done but it isn't often they are done so well in tandem with one another, or maybe it isn't done at all because I can't recall a single band at the moment. The strain in the vocals and violent twists of "Go Back To You Kingdom of Shadows" does vaguely bring to mind Blood Brothers but the way the song moves is entirely its own. That is the true pleasure of NEW FLESH; it is very easy to have albums that are located temporally but ones where you feel them specially tend to be a rarer breed and Young///Savage accomplish that. It isn't a throw-it-all-at-a-wall-and-see-what-sticks situation either, where things are unexpected because they don't fit. The delay effect that announces "90 Proof Stallion" doesn't lead in the sort of expected direction of rise and fall tension and yet when it takes a back seat it is completely comfortable while ceasing to ask the question even though it isn't answered.

NEW FLESH is creepy and beautiful like a drunken dream, a reference that is made on the record itself. I think it will establish itself firmly in the fall and winter months much like Small Brown Bike's The River Bed has throughout the years even if the albums aren't completely similar in nature.