We probably listen to a lot of indie bands without realizing that some of them have never stepped foot on U.S. soil. Indie rock band Young Liars, hailing from Vancouver have been around since 2008 and recently finished touring after releasing their latest album Tidal Wave last summer. It all started out when Andrew and Tyler formed a band in high school, leading to the rest of the band joining through mutual friends which got their current lineup. They’ve been pursuing music since such a young age that they were considering going to college for music. “I(Andrew) don’t know how realistic that is. You kind of look at it and you realize that most of the people who go into arts colleges don’t come out with much [laughs]. I was looking at the jazz program at the University of Capilano here which was very popular and I was also looking at North Texas. I think we always wanted to play music.”
Young Liars sound like a very current and hip name that would attract it’s very namesake- rebellious youths that make up the very fabric of our Brooklyn underground music scene that we love so damn much. Surprisingly, it came from a magical realism punk rock comic book that Andrew read where “one of them starts doing a lot of drugs and starts seeing things.” At the time there weren’t many “young” bands emerging, giving them the push to stick with the name. But now there’s a lot more out there, and “it’s a little bit of a regret. Even if we wanted to change it, there’s already Liars out there so we can’t just drop the Young part of our name.” Andrew also went on about how they aren’t much ‘self promoters’ and kind of got ‘tired’ being in their own videos, so the “Young Again” video featured old men dancing around town instead of the band members. “We were joking that we missed the boat of not showing our faces whatsoever from the gekko like Daft Punk. You can’t really pull it off when everybody knows what you look like, so having a video where we didn’t have to be really present was cool.”
If there’s one song you should listen to off their new album, it would probably be “Tidal Wave”. It’s one of the more upbeat tracks on the album that you’d want to hear out on the beach at night while sitting by a bonfire. “It wasn’t what we were usually writing at the time and every other song tended to be a lot louder, higher energy pop. It came out really groovy and we did some cool stuff; we used a DJ ducking style on Jordan’s vocals in the chorus and it was probably 30 beats per minutes slower than anything else we’ve written. It was one of the last songs to be fully finished in the studio.”
For a band that uses a lot of electronics and synthpop sounds, they do an exceptional job at trying to play everythng live without any previous recordings. No audience wants to see the same old show every time! “We’re an electronic band but almost 99% is what you hear on stage is actually happening at the time. We don’t run any samples or anything like that. We loop a lot so somebody would be playing live and we would loop it. We found that you fall into a real trap if you’re an electronic band and you can do everything really easily, where that stops being a show for people and that was something we wanted to avoid.”
The only time they’ve played the U.S. was in LA a few years back, and they haven’t been able to come back since then. Apparently, our great America isn’t the most neighborly country. Who would’ve thought? “Yeah- the visa process is really long and extensive. It actually didn’t go well the first time because our drummer couldn’t get in! If we were to go to Europe it would be much easier actually. We were held up until a week before our show and I contacted the local congressmen of the district that we were playing in because it was for a festival, and BEGGED them to push us through…Which he did, but when we got to the border they wouldn’t let the drummer in. We didn’t totally figure it out, but the cops hadn’t properly closed the file when he was pulled over once and basically saw it as an open police file. All he needed was a document they had given him that he had at home. So we actually got a drummer friend to cover who learned all the music the day of the show. It was one of our biggest shows too since we were opening for CSS and it was a little bit of a nightmare at the time. The funniest part was, he went on a vacation to the states the next week and all he needed was that piece of paper!”
Now that they’ve finished their Tidal Wave album tour, they’re all in summer vacation mode trying to soak up the sun and have some drinks on the beach. Let’s keep our fingers crossed to them making it to the U.S. sometime soon, bringing a slice of that Canadian indie rock scene to our venues!