“It’s my belief that history is a wheel.”After watching these three self proclaimed ‘rowdy Brummies’ smash the UK up one venue at a time last month, it’s safe to say that the only way we can describe Youth Man is in the words of the 24 Hour Party People and British Punk icon, Tony Wilson. With dozens of new bands burrowing themselves in generic pigeonholes these days, its about time a band came along and showed us exactly just why the British music scene was one that once stood for individuality, DIY ethics, and one that can’t be found anywhere else outside this island.
“The DIY ethic and attitude has never been more prevalent.”- Marcus
FIRST OFF YOU DESCRIBE YOUR SOUND AS ‘SEX PUNK’, SO ON THAT NOTE, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY YOUTH MAN SOUNDS LIKE?
Marcus (Perks, drums): “We started calling it sex punk cos people always want to put stuff in boxes. We find it really hard to categorize ourselves so we made something up. We’re sexy people and we make punky music.”
Miles (Cocker, bass): “Sometimes it makes you head bang and sometimes it makes your hips move.”
WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON BANDS LABELLING THEMSELVES AS ‘METAL’ AND ‘POP PUNK’ LEFT, RIGHT AND CENTRE? DO YOU THINK THE UK PUNK SCENE IS VERY MUCH STILL ALIVE?
Marcus: “The UK punk scene is definitely still alive. The DIY ethic and attitude has never been more prevalent and it’s easier than ever to make a record and put it out without having to get a load of industry big-shots involved. That’s what punk represents to us – doing your own thing, off your own back.”
Kaila (Vocals): “From my experience, a lot of musicians don’t even want to pigeonhole themselves into a genre, but audiences and labels and magazines etc. need to describe it somehow so bands have to try and figure out where to place themselves.”
HAVING FORMED IN 2012, WHAT HAVE BEEN SOME OF THE HIGHLIGHTS OF YOUR CAREER SO FAR?
Marcus: “Getting Facebook verified man. That’s all we ever wanted. Nah, the highlight for me so far is Montreux Jazz festival! Some of my all time idols have played seminal slots there.. That was such a random show to get offered and it was awesome. We drove there so it was a three-day round trip. Made it feel like a proper adventure.”
Kaila: “Yeah, getting our first opportunities to play outside the country was pretty surreal – first we played Afropunk fest in Paris, then Montreux Jazz fest. Not a bad start.”
“It’s strange, so many things can affect what happens in the half an hour you’re on stage.”-Miles Cocker
YOU’VE PLAYED THE LIKES OF LEEDS FESTIVAL ALL THE WAY THROUGH TO EMPTY VENUES. SO WHAT TO YOU MAKES A GOOD SHOW?
Miles: “It’s strange, so many things can affect what happens in the half an hour you’re on stage. If the drive to the venue has been long or we’re running late or not being able to eat at the right time can put everyone in a weird place. Generally speaking though we try to always put everything into every show we play regardless of what else might be going on.”
Kaila: “Yeah, there are so many variables on a show day that we try to just go for it on stage and a good show is just one where we can really connect with each other regardless of all the other stuff.”
YOU DESCRIBE YOURSELVES AS ‘ROWDY BRUMMIES’, DO YOU THINK THAT YOUR MUSIC IS A TRUE REPRESENTATION OF THIS? DO YOU THINK MUSIC HAS TO BE AS MUCH AS IT IS SERIOUS?
Marcus: “One of the biggest mistakes a band can make is taking themselves too seriously. We get excited and rowdy when we’re on stage because we’re stoked to be there. You have to be able to have fun with what you’re doing cos otherwise there’s no way you can last on a long ass tour where you’re all cramped into a tiny van next to each other. There’d be murders.”
“There’d be murders.”
Kaila: “For us, playing in this band is our hobby, our passion, and our release so it’s naturally fun but obviously serious because we’re trying to make this our career.”
YOU ALL SEEM PRETTY PASSIONATE ABOUT NEW MUSIC. HOW IMPORTANT IS IT TO SUPPORT NEW MUSIC?
Kaila: “Its very important to support new music. If we didn’t then there would be no point in us doing it. Music is often so wrapped up in its context that if you don’t listen to new stuff then you’re probably not listening to relevant stuff.”
FINALLY IF THE BAND COULD HAVE ONE ULTIMATE END GOAL WHAT WOULD IT BE?
All: “One nation under a groove.”
YOU CAN READ MORE BY GRABBING THE NEW ISSUE OUT NOW! ALSO FEATURING: THE AMITY AFFLICTION, WHILE SHE SLEEPS, FIZZY BLOOD, FRANK CARTER AND THE RATTLESNAKES AND MORE!