Richard Youngs
Core to the Brave


3.5
great

Review

by rasputin USER (196 Reviews)
May 7th, 2012 | 21 replies | 2,417 views


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist


2 of 3 thought this review was well written

Having made music for over two decades, Richard Youngs is still an anomaly in experimental music - he does not cheapen his style by simplying pushing it to various extremes, yet still manages to be relevant and produce interesting music that challenges us and the rest of his work. Most well known for his melancholic folk record Sapphie, which was dedicated to his canine companion of the same name, the 'breakthrough' success of that record did two things for Youngs - it greatly popularised his eclectic style but it also cast shadows over his other material. Thus, it's unlikely that a good portion of Sapphie fans like or have even heard any of his other records.

This leaves us in a possibly troublesome position; having Sapphie as an indicator of Youngs' style sets many up for disappointment. A lot of his music, particularly records such as Autumn Response or Beyond the Valley of the Ultrahits are initially cold and unaffecting, perhaps even dispassionate. Of course these early perceptions of the records are entirely wrong, but it is important to recognise that Youngs does not cater for short attention spans. Core to the Brave adheres rather strongly to the typical Youngs method - the record has a constant feeling of tumultuousness, a sense that everything could give way at any second. Even when the songs dip into pensive moods, Youngs keeps listeners on the very edge.

Core to the Brave is essentially a very simple album. It consists of mostly frenetic and noisy bass and drum rhythm work, with guitar fuzz interspersed amongst the general clatter. Youngs sings contemplatively over said music, creating a really weird juxtaposition which at first seems almost incompatible. The closest comparison that I could make would be the early works of groups like Suicide, though while sounding aesthetically similar one would not really call Core to the Brave a synth punk record. Its inability to be categorised definitely helps create a unique niche for the record in my listening rotation. and having lost myself in the album for over a month, you can be assured that its simple formula is not only strangely addictive but also emotionally engaging.



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user ratings (1)
3.5
great
related reviews

Sapphie

May

Comments:Add a Comment 
rasputin
May 7th 2012



14538 Comments


originally published in the March issue (#3) of ByVolume - http://www.byvolume.co.uk/

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
May 7th 2012



6005 Comments


Interesting stuff.

Digging: Troldhaugen - Obzkure Anekdotez For Maniakal Massez

Archelaos
May 7th 2012



241 Comments


Decent review. I get the impression that you could (and should) have fleshed out your ideas better, and some bits seem to be lacking punctuation. That said, I'll give this a shot.

rasputin
May 7th 2012



14538 Comments


I get the impression that you could (and should) have fleshed out your ideas better


what on earth do you mean

some bits seem to be lacking punctuation


which bits

Spare
May 7th 2012



5271 Comments


rad review brah. i'm one of those people who've only heard sapphie, what's a good other one of his albums to listen to

rasputin
May 7th 2012



14538 Comments


he's got a few I'd recommend, but none are quite like Sapphie. maybe go with his first (Advent) or just this one. up to you.

Archelaos
May 7th 2012



241 Comments


what on earth do you mean

Well, your second and third paragraphs seem a little short for some of the points they make.
Notably, stuff like this: "Of course these early perceptions of the records are entirely wrong"
seems a little fleeting without attention. Why is that as obvious as you suggest? I don't mean to be
annoying, I was just suggesting that you could maybe shed more light on some of the points you make
and lengthen the review a bit.

which bits

A lot of his music, particularly records such as Autumn Response or Beyond the Valley of the
Ultrahits are initially cold and unaffecting, perhaps even dispassionate.


Like here, for instance: it seems like you're missing a comma after 'Ultrahits'

the 'breakthrough' success of that record did two things for Youngs - it greatly popularised
his eclectic style but it also cast shadows over his other material.


Not 'missing' punctuation here, but it seems like a colon would be much better than a hyphen. Also,
I'd suggest replacing 'but' with 'and' as you led with: "that record did two things".

Stuff like that. Sorry, I realize that these are incredibly small nitpicks and I likely shouldn't
have mentioned them.

rasputin
May 7th 2012



14538 Comments


Notably, stuff like this: "Of course these early perceptions of the records are entirely wrong" seems a little fleeting without attention.


It means that earlier perceptions of those albums, that they are dispassionate and cold, are wrong. I don't think I can actually make that any more obvious.

A lot of his music, particularly records such as Autumn Response or Beyond the Valley of the Ultrahits are initially cold and unaffecting, perhaps even dispassionate.

Like here, for instance: it seems like you're missing a comma after 'Ultrahits'


I thought about that but I removed it on purpose, because there would be far too many commas in a sentence that isn't very long. I normally prefer flow to exact punctuation.

Also, I'd suggest replacing 'but' with 'and' as you led with: "that record did two thing".

I see your point but the two things I mention are adverse to each other.

rasputin
May 7th 2012



14538 Comments


also I just want to point out that I and a lot of people prefer brevity in reviews. the reason a lot of my points may seem 'fleeting' is because I do not wish to dwell on them and merely want to give a short opinion piece on the album, which will hopefully help other people decide if they would like to hear it or not. a review is not an essay.

Archelaos
May 7th 2012



241 Comments


I normally prefer flow to exact punctuation.


Fair enough.

You're right about the first point - I was likely just reading too much into that.

I see your point but the two things I mention are adverse to each other.


True. Maybe a slight rework of that sentence? Just trying to help... Although that seems a little
pointless given that I'm pretty sure users can't access the control panel thingy to edit reviews on
this site, right?

rasputin
May 7th 2012



14538 Comments


Yeah I can't actually change anything. That's why there's still a full stop in the middle of the last sentence where there should be a comma.

Archelaos
May 7th 2012



241 Comments


also I just want to point out that I and a lot of people prefer brevity in reviews. the
reason a lot of my points may seem 'fleeting' is because I do not wish to dwell on them and merely
want to give a short opinion piece on the album, which will hopefully help other people decide if
they would like to hear it or not. a review is not an essay.


Makes sense, I'm just used to the lengthier ones I suppose.

Also, you weren't kidding when you said this is experimental. I found it a little hard to slip into
at first, but it's actually quite good so far. For some reason the vocalist reminds me a wee bit of
Shearwater's frontman - mostly in "Sweet Field Of Life".

edit: maybe a combination between Shearwater and Dead Can Dance.

rasputin
May 7th 2012



14538 Comments


Sapphie is an essential record. It used to be a sputnik staple but nobody really talks about it anymore. I'd definitely recommend that as a stand alone album, but it doesn't accurately portray what Youngs is normally like.

potato, prob go with Sapphie first and then Advent, and after that you can probably find your own way.

rasputin
May 7th 2012



14538 Comments


Also, you weren't kidding when you said this is experimental. I found it a little hard to slip into
at first, but it's actually quite good so far. For some reason the vocalist reminds me a wee bit of
Shearwater's frontman - mostly in "Sweet Field Of Life".


Yeah it's a strange album. It took about 3 or 4 listens before I started getting into it properly. As I said in the review, there's only one record I've heard that comes close in terms of atmosphere and sound.

rasputin
May 7th 2012



14538 Comments


not enough idm

MO
May 7th 2012



18506 Comments


"simplying"

other than that good shit rasp, curious to hear this

rasputin
May 7th 2012



14538 Comments


good spot

shame i can't fix it

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
May 7th 2012



4507 Comments


Wholy shit this got a review. Didn't like Amaranthine too much so I don't know what to think of this one, but still cheers.

rasputin
May 8th 2012



14538 Comments


i haven't listened to amaranthine yet, will do soon though

i assume it's a lot different from this though

kingsoby1
Emeritus
June 14th 2012



4950 Comments


rasputin



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