Young Aviators - Self Help (Review)
Review by Jack Foley
GLASGOW based, Irish garage-pop trio Young Aviators have delivered a brisk debut album with Self Help and look to help themselves gain some positive attention.
Known for their hugely catchy fuzzed-out riffs, massive melodies and tongue-in-cheek observations, their debut is a sonic rush that is designed to recall the best of guitar pop from throughout the ages, whether it’s the joyous punk of Buzzcocks and The Undertones or the indie freshness of early Blur or even Arctic Monkeys.
They excel at delivering short, sharp, hook-laden crowd-pleasers that almost effortlessly get into your head and make you want to chant along with them. There’s just the slightest danger that in tipping their hat to so many recognisable influences, they’re in danger of lacking a firm identity of their own. But that may well come in time and Self Help serves as a positive statement of intent that will help get them even more widely noticed.
Forward Thinking is one of the standout tracks. But as if to underline the last comment, it owes a lot in its guitar structure to Blur’s There’s No Other Way, albeit with a more punk-inflicted chorus that is ripe for chanting along to (“we need to start some forward thinking”).
First Day on Earth, on the other hand, sounds like early Arctic Monkeys but, again, succeeds in blowing you away with its infectious energy, catchy riffs and anthemic chorus. Likewise, A Love To Change Your Ways.
A moment like Future Pill, meanwhile, offers up a riot of fuzz-rock energy that bears comparison with The Undertones in their prime.
That said, there are a couple of tracks that defy easy comparison when Young Aviators lay down some markers of their own. Deathrays in Disneyland strips away the guitars completely, replaces it with a melancholy piano, and comes over all serious for a lament about the state of the world and its constant threat of war (“missiles fly across the sky, a gun is clenched in every hand…”).
And album closer Sunset On The Motorway is a lovely dusky moment that eases the album to a close in supremely satisfying fashion (a good book-end to opening effort Sunrise On The Motorway).
Just prior to that, We’ve Got Names For Folk Like You is another spiky indie-rocker with more shades of Arctic Monkeys, while Rejection Letter is alive with angular riffs and a Franz Ferdinand-meets-Elastica kind of vibe. The guitars here are particularly rousing, while the shouty chorus is destined to get the mosh-pit awash with sweaty revellers.
It’s all good, rousing stuff and the future looks bright for them.
Download picks: Forward Thinking, First Day On Earth, Deathrays in Disneyland, Sunset On The Motorway