Interview: Youth

Youth is one of the fastest growing bands in Portland at the moment, which is even more admirable considering the group isn't simple to track down online without using a dash of Boolean logic. Despite not having a particulary easy name for Google to find, Youth is attracting an increasing number of fans for their lush, surf-style sound and catchy hooks. Coming off tour with Wild Ones and local-stars Typhoon, Youth will be recording at The Banana Stand later in the month of November, and we couldn't be happier to have a band of their caliber in to create an album. Youth's guitarist Maggie was kind enough to answer a few questions about their music prior leaving on tour earlier this month.

How long as the band been together in its current form? How did it come together?

With our current lineup (with Matthew on bass) we have been together since May of 2011, though our core members Maggie, Stephen and Elec have been playing together since June of 2010, with a couple of friends rotating on bass.  Youth started as a home recording project between Elec and Stephen in February of 2010 and asked our friends to join in order to create a fuller sound and a live set.

How would you describe your sound? What are your key influences?

Our influences stem from so many things, I think we have elements of pop, rock and roll, psychedelia, surf and folk but people's descriptions of our music tend to vary. Some key influences are Pavement, early Beach Boys records, Beulah, a lot of the bands on the Woodsist record label, and most importantly our friend's bands. Hearing all of the great music our friends are writing is really exciting and inspiring.

Tell us your thoughts about recording live. What makes you interested in recording live at the 'Stand?

We love the idea of live recordings, to get a single performance captured as it was in that moment.  Sometimes when you hit a wrong note it can sound better than the note you meant to play.  We are interested to record live at the 'Stand because we like the way you operate and enjoy the artists you choose to showcase, we think it's a great chance to play a live set with a local recording collective.

What's your favorite memory of a live show? Least favorite?

I think the least and most favorite memories of a live show are one and the same. It was a show we played in a forest near our friend's house in Eugene, OR. I don't think we really knew what we were in for . . . we had to hike in total darkness for about 10 minutes with all of our gear in tow, set up with a generator that was on the fritz and play as best as we could. Luckily we had some great friends there to help us, and I think all of the struggle and annoyances brought us closer together.

What other projects are you all involved with?

We are currently working on an EP with our friends at Badlands Recording, we have been playing a lot of shows and are trying to get prepared for a tour with our friends Typhoon and Wild Ones during early November.

Big thanks to Maggie for answering questions right before the busy rush of getting ready to go on tour. Youth is Maggie, Matt, Stephen, and Elec, and they'll be recording live at The Banana Stand later this month at a secret show. The header image is a collection of photo-booth prints taken of the band, and the middle image is  a photo of the band taken at Doug Fir by Aaron Colter.

For more about Youth, check out their pages on Facebook and Bandcamp.