Jan 312007
Authors: Jake Mountjoy

If you happened to catch Death Cab For Cutie on tour after they released “Plans” in 2005 you may remember sitting through a peaceful warm-up band before Seth Cohen’s favorite indie-rock quartet took the stage. That band was Australia’s Youth Group.

Death Cab guitarist Chris Walla had discovered the band and Youth Group scored a U.S. tour as the openers. Youth Group was generating some buzz for their debut album, “Skeleton Jar.” Of course, a friendship with Death Cab led to grabbing the attention of the popular teen drama “The O.C.” Youth Group recorded a cover of Alphaville’s “Forever Young” (which is on the new album) for the TV show, which became a popular hit back home in Sydney.

Fast forward to today and we have Youth Group’s latest release, “Casino Twilight Dogs.” To start, the record doesn’t venture too far from their previous work.

The first song, “Catching and Killing,” starts the record out with a full melodic pop sound, Australian style. But my favorite cut is “On a String.” The track is filled with a melodic undertone on top of Toby Martin’s sing-along melancholy windpipes.

Dare I use the word and say that the “Emo” crowd could enjoy this? But don’t let the term scare you away from this band.

Overall, “Casino Twilight Dogs” is straight-up Indie pop. It doesn’t blow you away like the new Justin Timberlake probably does, but it satisfies the heartfelt adventurer in all of us.

KCSU music director Jake Mountjoy can be reached at kcsumusic@gmail.com.

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