Review: Young Boy – Other Summers

It’s a sign of the times that we are no longer surprised when two artists exchange ideas over the Internet and form their own band. Young Boy’s USP on that score is that they are actually half-brothers, who grew up separately on different continents. Yet Alessandro Baris (from Italy) and Joseph Costa (from USA) reunited over their shared love of music to form Young Boy.

Young Boy Album Cover

Costa may be known for being a member of trip-hop outift L’altra but synth pop euphoria is the result here. As far as introductions go, ‘Chasing Sun’ and ‘Rides Away’ are high on bouncy uptempo values but somewhat lacking in substance. However, when they slow down the pace and the bounciness, the siblings make some lovely minimalist pop; the first of which is ‘Secret Place’, where some bubbling electronica, chiming guitar and breathy harmonies create a subtle, special moment. ‘Wooden Ships’ is another song which seems to relive the childhood nostalgia they possibly never had together (“You hide up in the trees. You scratched your knees and broke your wrist”). It’s wistful and romantic as is the title track and ‘Let You Go’ even if the melody to the latter sounds alarmingly similar to the 80’s BBC comedy ‘Just Good Friends’. Elsewhere, ‘Walk Cheerfully’ offers some infectious indie jangle and there’s even a bit of shoegaze for ‘Love Incidence’.

Taken as a whole, ‘Other Summers’ is blessed with an innocent, lightly melancholic feel, which recalls not only British indie pop but specifically a another retro-indebted group, pacificUV. Whatever its influences though, this is heartfelt, charming and enduring music.

Web Sites:
Young Boy Official Site
Young Boy – Other Summers on Bandcamp

Further Listening:
pacificUV, L’Altra, Scarlet Youth

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