Australia’s diverse melodic rock outfit Youth Group is fresh off its tour with the reunited The Get Up Kids and immediately kicked off their own U.S. headlining trek in support of their fourth full-length album, “The Night Is Ours.”
Having spent a lot of time in the U.S. for touring this year, the Sydney-based band’s front man Toby Martin (vocals, guitar) said America has become like a second home.
“We’ve all actually been living in New York since March and have become well-adjusted to America,” Martin said in a phone interview before taking the stage in Omaha, Neb. “We still visit home, but I think a lot of people in arts often live in other cities for a while. It’s part of retribution.”
Unfortunately for stateside fans, Youth Group albums are released in the U.S. three or more months after their release in Australia. Martin sees this as an opportunity instead of a roadblock, though.
“I kinda like it because we’re always able to change some things,” Martin said. “We’ve changed the album cover before, and sometimes we add or change some tracks.”
Experimenting with different approaches for their music has been an important component to Youth Group’s consistent, yet changing sound.
“On the second record [“Skeleton Jar”] we kind of found something that was ours I think,” Martin said, “and it just sorta came and evolved out of song writing.”
Also different for the four-piece band was recording their latest LP in a 1920’s vacant mess hall on Sydney’s harbor. With the studio clock ticking, Martin said making their own studio with the help of connections from Cameron Emerson-Elliott (guitar) was an immersive experience.
“It had its own sense of isolation, like its own country on the water, even though it was only 20 minuets from Sydney,” Martin said. “I think the environment made the album more contemplative, more so than others. There was a sense of space and time, and it wouldn’t be quite like that in a real studio.”
Even after the Aug. 26 announcement of Youth Group’s U.S. label services group (World’s Fair) going under, Martin remains optimistic.
“I think the traditional record label being responsible for everything might stop,” Martin said. “Culture finds fast new ways to distribute music. It’s kind of terrifying and exciting, but bands always find a way to take it on.”
On Youth Group’s second return to the U.S., Martin said fans might hear a couple songs rarely performed.
“We’ll probably play a couple from the first album,” Martin said. “Right
now I enjoy playing ‘A Sign.’ It’s different than anything we’ve written. It’s a bit less like ‘worry me’ songs, and it’s a bit more just straight up pleasure.”
After a positive reception three months ago in Columbus, Youth Group returns tonight at The Basement.
“We’re looking forward to Columbus. We had a fun gig there last time. and we’re excited to play again,” Martin said.