Youngblood Hawke
Wake Up


3.1
good

Review

by SowingSeason STAFF
April 26th, 2013 | 52 replies | 5,839 views


Release Date: 04/23/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Entertaining and packed with energy, Youngblood Hawke shoots out of the cannon with an over-the-top debut that will please everyone and genuinely impress nobody.

Everything about Youngblood Hawke screams “the next big thing”, from the ridiculous sense of excitement that explodes out of their songs to the sleek and shiny production that has caused a goddamn frenzy in the world of synth-pop. Wake Up is a sensationalized debut, channeling the tune sense and pure elation of bands such as Phoenix and Passion Pit into something that is, quite simply, brilliant fun. It does not fuse genres in any groundbreaking or innovative way, and there’s a good chance that in a couple of years we might even forget that this album exists. However, it’s here right now and it possesses quite an impressive list of over-the-top anthems to dominate your local radio for the remainder of the year. That alone makes them worth a casual listen, if for no other reason just to see where all of the hype is emanating from.

As with many records that share Wake Up’s exuberant qualities, the individual tracks are largely hit-or-miss. Obvious standouts such as ‘We Come Running’, ‘Say Say’, and ‘Stars’ anchor the album’s bid for catchiness, while attempts to branch out into atmospheric territory are (for the most part) laughably bad, falling way short of the Shins-like style that they aspire for. This is nothing new, as we’ve witnessed innumerable trend-pleasing bands throw everything that they have into a couple of singles in hopes of snagging the mass media’s attention. While Youngblood Hawke is a cut above those bands, they still don’t demonstrate the artistry to conceive a masterpiece or the musicianship to craft a genuinely appreciable instrumental work. Wake Up is glam pop – all glitz with minimal substance. However, for better or worse, they’ve embraced that niche...and as some of the better tracks on Wake Up would indicate, they have the potential to become one of the best bands in a scene that’s fast on the rise. ‘Danny Boy’, which sounds like it could have been a lost MGMT track off of Oracular Spectacular, is the kind of non-hit that Youngblood Hawke needs more of. It employs subtle, dreamy keyboards and falsetto verses that actually outshine the chorus, making for a fascinating listen that doesn’t become stale after the first several run-throughs. Opener ‘Rootless’ is another vital track, infusing Wake Up with a sense of euphoric excitement that travels like shock waves throughout the entirety of the record. Unfortunately, there are too few songs that play a supporting role to mega-hits like ‘We Come Running’, giving us an end result that is as uneven as it is exhilarating.

Youngblood Hawke is certainly part of an ever-growing movement towards electronic, synth-driven indie pop. To some people, the very notion of indie evolving into one of the most accessible, mainstream genres around is nauseating. But to those who are either too enthralled by the glamour of recent trends, too naive to appreciate subtlety, or just too happy to give a damn what umbrella term a specific type of music falls under, Wake Up brings a lot to the table. Following in the footsteps of bands like Phoenix and Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Youngblood Hawke is the kind of rowdy sibling that doesn’t like to be ignored. It won’t be long before they come bursting into the spotlight, and that time may not even wait until they release another album. Such is the nature of pop music that is front-and-center; it puts everything on the table all at once. Youngblood Hawke may never be as well respected as the artists that pioneered their trails for them, but they do have the potential to be “the next big thing” in a here-today-gone-tomorrow musical climate. For now, that’s their life expectancy...to go beyond that, they’ll have to figure out a way to blaze a few new paths of their own.



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user ratings (19)
Chart.
2.9
good

Comments:Add a Comment 
Gyromania
April 25th 2013



15187 Comments


posting 2 reviews at the same time god sowing you should know better!

toxin.
April 25th 2013



12012 Comments


The return of Sowing, yay! Great review as ever.

I actually had high hopes for their full length after hearing 'We Come Running' but I had a lurking suspicion that they'd be a hits band anyways.

I'll probably check out the highlights you mention and avoid the rest.

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
April 25th 2013



15332 Comments

Album Rating: 3.1

The return of Sowing, yay!

Guess who's back.

Back again.

Sowing's back,

Tell a friend.

Digging: Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds - Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus

LifeAsAChipmunk
April 25th 2013



4854 Comments


so will you tell all your friends
you've go your gun to mah head

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
April 25th 2013



4507 Comments


Please sound like the Happy Mondays please sound like the Happy Mondays

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
April 25th 2013



4507 Comments


Similar Artists: Imagine Dragons

god damn it.

merpmerp
April 25th 2013



792 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

^ I made the similar list and I don't know what I'm talking about so disregard it.

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
April 25th 2013



20855 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6

I had no idea they were ready to release an LP. Unsurprised with what you say here Sowing. Can imagine this album will practically mirror the strengths & weaknesses from the Imagine Dragons LP.

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
April 25th 2013



15332 Comments

Album Rating: 3.1

Musically they aren't very similar to Imagine Dragons, but in terms of being hit or miss they're definitely similar

Cygnatti
April 25th 2013



21349 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Lmfao mister tornado.

Digging: The Avalanches - Since I Left You

iGuter
April 26th 2013



337 Comments


I posted the album and you're the only one who gave it a review and a rating.

Digging: Sharon Van Etten - Are We There

iGuter
April 26th 2013



337 Comments


Now do a review for Denitia and Sene! No one else has rated their album and their debut was released last month! Haha

keyokeyo
April 26th 2013



328 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Nice review, came across We Came Running awhile ago on YouTube, will queue the rest of this for upcoming listens

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
April 26th 2013



15332 Comments

Album Rating: 3.1

Thanks! The rest of the album doesn't live up to We Come Running, but there's worthwhile tracks to be found. You also have to have a carefree side to enjoy this.

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
April 26th 2013



9977 Comments


SOWING

So glad you're back, buddy. I'm honored to be a staff writer alongside you!

Digging: Deniro Farrar - Rebirth

CarnageWhy
April 26th 2013



6 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

im a fan of youngblood hawke - theyre great live


Omaha
Staff Reviewer
April 26th 2013



9977 Comments


In other news, it sounds like these guys probably sound a lot like Walk the Moon. Would you say so, Sowing?

ProjectFreak
April 26th 2013



1292 Comments


omaha and sowing need to keep alternating comments, the avatars are pretty great together

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
April 27th 2013



9977 Comments


I'd be down.

chambered99
April 27th 2013



780 Comments


holy fuck this is bad lol

Digging: Baton Rouge - Totem



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