Welcome to The Verge: a column dedicated to music on the edge of a breakthrough. This (day late) post proves I’m not just stealing from the BBC. So there.
Down in Texas, Houston is a three hour drive from Austin. So while H-town is known for chopped and screwed hip-hop, it can’t help but be influenced by the city responsible for SXSW and Austin City Limits. That’s evident in the music of newcomers Young Mammals, a four-piece band whose debut album Carrots drops on Tuesday.
Carrots is full of atmospheric indie rock, in the vein of Broken Social Scene and the Flaming Lips. Pop melodies swirl with lush, reverb-heavy guitars. It’s noisy but not abrasive; a garage band melting in the summer heat. The music is frenetic and fun, just like their low-budget zombies-versus-band video for “Wires and Buttons.”
Many indie rock bands that oscillate between pop and noise reach too often for the latter. For the most part, Young Mammals strike a fair balance here. The songs average about three minutes long and don’t wear out their welcome; there’s enough drone to hook – but not drown – the listener. And except for the experimental “untitled” that closes the album, there is something for fans of straight-forward indie rock to latch onto during every song.