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PostSubject: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:39 pm

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BBC Review

Young Guns continue their rise through the rock ranks with an assured debut album.
Raziq Rauf 2010-07-12

Are Young Guns really the next great big British rock band? That seems to be the consensus of much of the domestic rock cognoscenti. After Bon Jovi chose the fresh-faced quintet as support for the first night of their London residency at The O2 arena, they’re certainly going in the right direction. But as we all know, big is not always beautiful.

Having burst out of High Wycombe just a year ago with their debut EP, the band displays some brazen self-belief by releasing their debut album themselves (and earn no little kudos in the process). Dreamboat-in-waiting Gustav Wood’s lovelorn, near-apocalyptic lyrics manage to strike a chord that lasts the duration of the album, and there are enough huge stadium rock moments for this not to feel like a band’s first proper release. Also admirably accomplished is the slick production, which again has this band sounding bigger than they are.

Opening track Sons of Apathy is a bold slice of radio-friendly, sing-along rock while recent single Winter Kiss involves some craftily pinched harmonics before the neo-gothic tinges in the chorus add further drama. The dirty feel to D.O.A and the subtly stringed background to After the War lend contrast and variety to the album.

While it is a fair argument that bands similar to Young Guns haven’t found an identity to go with their style, it’s not quite the case here. While this is certainly an album – and indeed a band – aimed at a very similar fanbase to acts like Lostprophets and You Me At Six, there’s just enough of an edge to their image and sound to differentiate them. Indeed, there’s no respite as the music boils over and lunges forward with comfortable familiarity throughout these 50 minutes. There are very few songs that you won’t be able to sing the refrains from after a listen or two, should you so wish.

It’s questionable whether Young Guns will have any lasting impression upon the annals of rock history, but the current hyperbole they’re enjoying on their rise through the ranks may well help them corner a wildly impressionable section of the market. For some that might not be enough, but for the rest it’s all they need.

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:41 pm

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OneMetal.com REVIEW:

Young Guns – All Our Kings Are Dead

At the minute there are a very large handful of bands all seemingly trapped in the same vein of music. All wanting to distinguish themselves as ‘alternative’ by the ever useful genre tag ‘alternative rock’, these bands rarely stray from the same formula. Big sounding noise coupled with a lot of gang vocals and the ability to excite people live with the most mediocre of techniques. To stop any confusion here are a number of ‘alternative rock’ bands: Lostprophets, Fightstar, The Blackout and We Are The Ocean. One of the newest faces on the scene though are the Buckinghamshire quintet Young Guns.

Their debut album, All Our Kings Are Dead, is a twelve track reminder of why some bands should just stick to playing live. Admittedly some of the tracks are listenable, some you can even stand for the entire song, but it just doesn’t cause any arousal at all. Kicking off with one of their more famous tunes ‘Songs Of Apathy’, the five-piece rip through just over four minutes of amateur punk mixed with uninspired lyrics and more “whooas” than Bon Jovi‘s back catalogue.

From then on things don’t get any better. It becomes increasingly obvious that this band are far better live than in the studio. The music itself sounds a lot like Paramore, except for vocalist Gustav Wood. The vocals really aren’t anything to cheer on this album either. As well the lyrics being sub-par by any standard, Wood’s lack of vocal ability just makes it worse.

The point of the majority of songs on this LP is for the choruses to sound as epic and as ‘stadium rock’ as physically possible – the verses are virtually redundant. For Young Guns, it’s all about a chance for the fans to engage, which sounds admirable at first until you realise that these atmosphere changing choruses will be sung by the crowd only – so you won’t even get to hear Wood sing the ‘good’ bit.

Young Guns do try and have a go at ballads once or twice throughout the album. Tracks such as ‘Meter And Verse’ and ‘Stitches’ try to display Young Guns‘ array of talent in their song writing, but alas don’t particularly work. There is a general sense of the lyrics and the music trying to be emotive and atmospheric, but the band’s ability falls short of their ambitions, instead just conjuring a crushing feeling that you’re not listening to something more worthwhile – a sentiment which basically sums up the album.

Overall, given Young Guns‘ live appeal and their studio mediocrity, perhaps a live album would have been more suitable. It would have provided an opportunity for the band to show off their crowd-pleasing skills, and their sound would have benefited from the raw edge of the live arena. Instead, they opted for the studio LP, which will probably be adored by current fans, but left in the bargain bin by anyone outside of the loop. To be fair, it’s best to remain outside.

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:47 pm

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Young Guns - All Our Kings Are Dead

Line-up:

Gustav Wood - Vocals
John Taylor - Guitar
Fraser Taylor – Guitar
Simon Mitchell - Bass
Ben Jolliffe - Drums

Since their relatively unknown EP, Mirrors, Young Guns have managed to take everything that defined their previous sound and improve upon it in almost every aspect, but does this make All Our Kings Are Dead a great album?

My expectations of this album were mixed; with first appearances it seems like yet another mainstream band attempting to follow in the wake of other successes such as You Me and Six and Lostprophets. Without a doubt, Young Guns have traits reminiscent of those bands, however I feel they’ve managed to add their own element to an otherwise bland scene. The first thing that sets them apart is the vocals. Undeniably Gustav Wood carries the album with his soaring voice that gives it a huge sound. The first showcase of this talent is Meter & Verse’s chorus where he really opens up with the line “I’ll never know divinity”.

This neatly steers us onto the lyrical content of the album and it’s fantastic to say the least. With so many lyricists that can’t help but write about themes of heartbreak and bitterness it’s a breath a fresh air to hear other issues being confronted. In ‘Sons of Apathy’ Gustav speaks about the lack of a father figure, “My father conquered seas but he was no help to me”, these moving lyrics are a more tender take on the subject than most but delivered with such energy that it’s a testament to how he’s grown as a person. Not once do we hear a familiar clichéd themes and that alone deserves kudos.

The feel of the album is very cohesive as every song sits well next to the other as well as still offering their own unique characteristics to the album. Although there is the issue that some of the guitar riffs can sound very similar. They’ve definitely found a strong formula yet in some cases they seem a little too comfortable with it. A prime example would be the intros to ‘D.O.A’ and ‘Elements’. I think that both riffs are equally good, however they’re too comparable for comfort. Thankfully the structure of both is diverse enough to differentiate, as the riff in D.O.A isn’t repeated. Another example is ‘Sons of Apathy’ and ‘Crystal Clear’ as they start almost identically until eventually developing into their own individual melodies.

For me, the highlights of the album are ‘Crystal Clear’, ‘Meter & Verse’ and ‘After the War’. They showcase each significant moment of the album whether it be an infectious chorus, belting vocals or crushing riffs. John and Fraser offer a great level of guitar playing and whilst there were no jaw dropping moments, it’s impressive nonetheless. The bass is always audible which is always a good sign of decent production and the drums are consistently tidy and complement everything perfectly. They’ve created a classic sound that to me just screams potential.

What holds this album back from being excellent is simply the restraints they’ve imposed on themselves. They’re an above average band held back by average influences. They’re talented guys and for a debut album this is remarkable but for real improvement they need to push the boundaries of their talent and work on the sound they’ve done such an excellent job of defining. I really believe Young Guns have huge potential but their future success is a sink or swim situation. They could be swept along with the other pale successes such as You Me At Six and Lostprophets or they could continue with what they’ve strived so hard to create and push their sound even further. Either way, I’m looking forward to a follow up album to see where they decided to take it.

Track Listing
1. Sons of Apathy (4/5)
2. Crystal Clear (4.5/5)
3. Meter and Verse (4.5/5)
4. Weight of the World (2/5)
5. D.O.A (3/5)
6. Stitches (3/5)
7. Winter Kiss (3.5/5)
8. Elements (5/5)
9. After the War (5/5)
10. Endless Grey (3/5)
11. At the Gates (4/5)
12. Beneath the Waves (3.5/5)

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:56 pm

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Young Guns - All Our Kings are Dead (2010 LP)

Young Guns' debut album All Our Kings Are Dead has definitely got fans and critics alike sitting up and paying attention. The British quintet have made waves since the release of their EP Mirrors and after supporting some big name bands such as Bon Jovi and Lostprophets, as well as being added to the Soundwave Revolution line-up for 2011, it’s apparent that it's their time to shine.

"Sons of Apathy" opens the album and sets the tone nicely for what’s to come. The bands melodic rock style has the ability to appeal to a wide range of people, with solid drumming and anthem like choruses perfect for a stadium crowd. With the song being incredibly catchy, it's almost easy to miss the hidden references and emotional turmoil within the lyrics about lead singer Gustav Woods father, demonstrated through lyrics such as "My father was an oak/ the earth moved when he spoke/ my father conquered seas/ but was not there for me."

"Weight of the World" is easily one of the catchiest songs on the album, with Gustav Woods' vocals slightly more clearer than the previous songs, as well as putting a heavier emphasis on guitar solos which works well to give the song a bit more diversity. The song has been re-modelled into a more polished version compared to the one on 2009 EP Mirrors. Not necessarily a bad thing, but it does give it a more commercial vibe rather than portraying the raw sound.

"Winter Kiss" creates a bit more of an angsty sound which works in favour for the band to break up the anthem type sounding songs and giving them a bit of versatility. Instrumentally the music takes on a slightly eerier sounding vibe creating a certain mystery and suspense within it. Lyrics such as “I want to sleep, but I hear voices, I hear them calling out to me,” back up the vibe created throughout the song.

"Beneath The Waves", a seven minute long song, shows off the bands more alternative rock side, putting a bigger emphasis on the band instrumentally with the last 2-3 minutes being a pure instrumental of pounding drums and heavier guitar work.

All Our Kings Are Dead is an excellent first album from Young Guns. The one criticism that could be made is that it is a little too polished – therefore losing some of the raw emotion and rock credibility. Vocally and instrumentally the band are at the top of their game and while it’s not the most versatile of albums, all songs have seemed to be put there for a reason – there weren’t any songs I didn’t like or ones that appeared to be fillers.

Review Score: 8.5/10

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 12:03 am

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Hit after Hit.... Subba lays down the verdict on the debut Young Guns album
9/10
Label: Own label

All Our Kings Are Dead
Live Forever (Bands Own Label)

Now, this is a band who have been causing quite a stir amongst the UK rock scene. After releasing their debut EP ‘Mirrors’ last year they’ve quite matter-of-factly exploded. Anyone who’s ever even just thought about buying a rock magazine or heading down to a show would have had no chance avoiding the young quintet. But is all the fuss actually deserved?

Yes it is. To be frank. This is severely impressive stuff. As soon as lead track ‘Sons Of Apathy’ kicks in things begin to get really exciting. They have a way of working a classic rock riff with a massive pop twist, which creates a massive sound. Think about how sleazy cock rock was and then make it accessible for kids. Got it in your mind? This is it, baby!

Fresh from opening for Bon Jovi and playing the festival circuit, it’s with no doubt that I say these are great live anthems; there are some epic moments here - take ‘Meter and Verse’s melancholy regret and its following track, the catchy ‘Weight Of The World’ which was remixed from their debut EP – this record is seriously off the hook.

And it’s not just a one-off hit either, after numerous listens things you won’t have noticed stick out, an off-beat strike of the snare or lyric which strikes a chord. Young Guns have succeeded in finding a unique place in the modern market, something fresh which exhilarates the listener yet which nods appreciatively to rocks greatest.

So yes - yes it does seem that the fuss is all well and truly deserved. ‘All our Kings Are Dead’ is an unashamedly polished and outright commercial slab of alternative rock, and I bloody love it.

Anna Meacham

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 12:44 am

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REVIEW.

Young Guns are one of those bands that most people probably haven’t heard of, but soon will, mainly due to the fact that they have just been added to the ever-growing Soundwave Revolution line-up. The British five-piece released their debut EP ‘Mirrors’ in 2009 and have been out on tour in support of it ever since.

During this time they recorded their debut full length ‘All Our Kings Are Dead’ with Dan Weller, who also worked with the band on ‘Mirrors.’ From the opening power chords and driving drum rhythms of first track 'Sons Of Apathy,' it is obvious that Young Guns are a clear cut rock band, heavy chorus, not-so-heavy verse, clean strong vocals, all the necessary elements.

Sounding similar to their homeland tour buddies We Are The Ocean, but with songs that are far more interesting, these “newer” bands seem to be replicating what Lostprophets did several years ago, just not as well. That being said, ‘AOKAD’ isn’t a terrible listen as many of the choruses will get stuck in your head.

The song’s finer moments are when they are at their heaviest and there are plenty of powerful, guitar driven rhythms, such as the strong opening of 'Meter And Verse,' one of the stand out tracks.
Guitar and vocal tones have little variance, which when coupled with the lack of stand out songs make it easy to lose concentration during the album’s midsection.

The record ends with the lengthy 'Beneath The Waves,' a sinister sounding assault with an extended heavy, yet atmospheric, musical ending.

The band have also included their ‘Mirrors’ EP as a bonus on the record which shows why it earned them Rock Sound and Kerrang! Magazine awards for ‘Best British Newcomer,’ as although it is not as produced as the album, it is a raw, energetic explosion of rock from start to finish.

CONCLUSION.

Young Guns are a strong pillar, and one of the better, in the new wave of British bands who seem intent on bringing back the type of heavy rock music that has mainstream appeal.

TRACKLISTING.

1. Sons Of Apathy
2. Crystal Clear
3. Meter & Verse
4. Weight Of The World
5. D.O.A
6. Stiches
7. Winter Kiss
8. Elements
9. After The War
10. Endless Grey
11. At the Gates
12. Beneath The Waves

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 12:51 am

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Young Guns - All Our King Are Dead
Record Label: N/A
Release Date: 12th July, 2010

Since the release of their Mirrors EP back in 2009 and the Kerrang Relentless Tour, which took place early 2010, Young Guns have been making waves in the British rock scene. Mirrors showed Young Guns to be a band loaded with huge soaring choruses and fast catchy riffs, so as an opening EP it set a high benchmark. With debut album All Our Kings Are Dead , the High Wycombe lads look set to take things one step further. They aim to leave a hoard of other British bands in their wake, including the likes of We Are The Ocean and Deaf Havana, who are all jostling for position to snatch the limelight for themselves.

In simple terms, the first five songs of All Our Kings Are Dead amass to bring one of the best openings to an album I’ve heard. "Sons Of Apathy",
"The Weight Of The World" and new single "Crystal Clear" should all be familiar material to Young Guns fans. With the brilliantly slow and epic "Meter & Verse" and the huge chorus of "D.O.A" the new material proves to be breaking incredible new ground. I was lucky enough to hear an acoustic performance of "Meter & Verse" recently and the vocals from Gustav Wood were amazing. The only negative for me at this point is the re-recording of "The Weight Of The World," where there are clear changes in vocals and guitar levels. However this takes little away from what is a truly amazing song.

The outstanding opening of All Our Kings Are Dead always meant that one song will suffer, and this song is "Stitches". This song is still good, especially the mid-song solo, but nevertheless the previous songs before slightly overshadow it. Next is the breakthrough single "Winter Kiss," where the haunting opening instrumental creates an incredible atmosphere, present throughout the whole song. There is a turning point in "Winter Kiss" where another step in quality is made as Gustav makes his presence felt as he sings, "A distress call to one and all, can you hear me? Please respond, ‘cos i’m searching for another sign of life, but all I hear is white noise." This makes it clear that Young Guns pay attention to not only the structure of songs, but also the overall sound and feel.

The ending of the album doesn't contain any current hits, but "After The War", "Endless Grey" and "At The Gates" are all solid songs; this is due to the sheer quality Young Guns possess in writing big choruses. The biggest surprise with All Our Kings Are Dead is the final song "Beneath The Waves." Album-ending songs are usually regarded as the weakest, but "‘Beneath The Waves" couldn’t be more fitting - ‘huge’ is the best word to describe it. It is definitely the album's heaviest song, as well as the longest, racking up over seven minutes. This is due to the majority of the song being instrumental, but don’t let that put you off. It's worth every minute.

"Beneath The Waves" is the song that truly convinces me that All Our Kings Are Dead is not a one off album. Young Guns have the confidence to put a seven minute song this good as the album closer. This confirms that Young Guns have a lot more to say, and I for one cannot wait to hear. Alongside fellow UK rockers We Are The Ocean and their first album offering of Cutting Our Teeth, this is as good as a debut album could hope to be.

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:23 am

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YOUNG Guns are the new bright hopes on the hard rock scene. Based in High Wycombe, they’ve quickly shot to prominence off the back of their Mirrors EP in July 2009, boisterous support gigs for the likes of Lostprophets, Taking Back Sunday and Fightstar, and by winning the Best New Band award at the Kerrang! readers’ poll.

Debut album All Our Kings Are Dead is the first proper chance to weigh up their credentials and, alas, I can’t quite hear what the fuss is all about. True, they possess a confidence usually reserved for the biggest acts, and a depth of sound designed to fill the biggest stadiums around the world.

But the songs lack much identity. They’re aggressive, sometimes despondent and mostly fairly generic for the hard rock scene. There’s nothing to really set them apart from contemporaries such as Lostprophets, Fightstar, Funeral For A Friend and the like.

That’s not to say they can’t carry a tune. A track like Stitches is shot through with some thrilling guitar work, and a finer sense of brooding that matches the lyrics, which stem from self worth and uncertainty.

But as with a lot of big rock acts of this nature, there’s a little too much emphasis on darkness and depression. It’s a rallying call to a disaffected youth that screams it’s OK to be angry at the world. But it’s a little unrelenting.

Vocalist Gustav Woods explains: “The album as a whole is, by some subconscious act, a document of both where I am at this point in my life, the experiences I’ve had on my journey to where I am and who I am today, and the lessons I’ve learned.

“I can only write about what is relevant to me, or else it feels fake. I gew up without my father, and it’s only as I get older that I realise how this has shaped me, and I in turn realised that in some ways I felt that the same lack of a traditional role model figure was also relevant to being a young person in our modern world.

“From being a child up to now, it has always felt like there is an inescapable feeling of futility and inevitability, almost a direction-less resentment threaded through my generation. Aggression and nihilism is not just accepted but more and more glamourised, we have no religion to find solace in, no political leaders that inspire faith, and it’s easy to feel lost and somehow abandoned.”

It’s all cheery stuff… although Woods refutes the notion that this makes for a depressing listen, insisting there’s an overall feeling of positivity and hope running through the songs. He hopes it’ll inspire people to feel they can create their own future; to take a leaf out of Young Guns’ own success.

Those with similar sentiments and feelings of abandonment appear to have flocked to the band so far, and there’s no reason to suggest that All Our Kings Are Dead won’t catapult them into the big leagues in a big hurry. But for an artist who expresses a desire to inspire… there’s very little to escape the run-of-the-mill, solid but unspectacular vibe surrounding many of the songs.

The guitars are powerful, epic and loud (witness Elements), but there’s simply not enough diversity. If anything, the LP is marked by the couple of occasions when it slows the pace and opts for something a little different (though never too far).

The aforementioned Stitches is one such example, and a highlight, while After The War, which deals with death, is another – although the serene opening is still quickly replaced by the more familiar sound. It works better, though… as does Winter Kiss and, early on, At The Gates.

But songs such as Sons of Apathy, Meter & Verse, Endless Grey and Beneath The Waves are just so generic and indifferent that they don’t seem capable of inspiring anything other than apathy. For all their noise, Young Guns don’t have enough firepower in their armoury just yet to really achieve the status they’re seeking.

Download picks: Stitches, After The War, At The Gates, Elements

Track listing:

1. Sons Of Apathy
2. Crystal Clear
3. Meter & Verse
4. Weight Of The World
5. D.O.A
6. Stiches
7. Winter Kiss
8. Elements
9. After The War
10. Endless Grey
11. At the Gates
12. Beneath The Waves

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:25 am

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Album Review: Young Guns ‘All Our Kings Are Dead’

UK Release July 12th 2010 on Live Forever Records

Young Guns have recently burst onto the rock scene, with thrilling live performances across the UK. The release of their debut full-length album All Our Kings Are Dead this July is the moment fans have long been waiting for from the five piece.

Little more than a year ago, Young Guns were somewhat an unknown entity, and have shot to fame with their anthemic songs and high energy.

The opening song is Young Guns’ most recently released single, Sons of Apathy which like all of Young Guns’ songs has a catchy chorus and is really easy to sing along to. The twelve-track album features two songs from their previous EP ‘Mirrors’, these are Winter Kiss and Weight of the World although the latter has been re-recorded for this album.

D.O.A and Endless Grey really are the stand-out songs for me on this album, they are really fresh, but still carry the Young Guns sound which they bring to every song. Throughout the album you can tell this is a band that is going places, considering they have already supported the likes of Bon Jovi, The Blackout and All Time Low, and have been on their own headline tour and have another planned for December I’m sure there will be no escape from the Buckinghamshire lads!

The Album is available now, and the first batch ship with a signed poster from the band.

Review by Chris Brown

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:27 am

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If you wanted a perfect example of 'hotly tipped', you really need look no further than High Wycombe quintet Young Guns. Stakes are set high after the success of last year's EP 'Mirrors' and delivering the goods with their debut album was always going to essential in keeping the momentum the band have been gathering over the last 18 months going.

'All Our Kings Are Dead' sees Young Guns refining their marriage of stadium and mid '00s rock with soundscapes big enough to park Aerosmith's travelcade in; and though the balls-to-the-wall approach to production historically has a less than favourable hit rate, it's effortlessly on target here and suits the band perfectly.

To pick highlights from an album positively bursting with behemoth choruses is always a bit tricky, but past singles and 'Weight of the World' from the EP aside, 'Crystal Clear' and 'Stitches' are especially great at superglueing themselves to your subconscious.

Where bands not a million stylistic miles away have stumbled keeping an identity across an entire record, Young Guns have excelled. It's great to hear an album that clocks in at over 50 minutes and feels like it's meant to be way that way, and the amount of effort put into the flow and deliberateness of track order is something that many could and should take a capitalised note of.

The UK scene is producing some fantastic ideas and approaches to making music at the moment - Young Guns are firmly in this club and deserve every bit of praise they get. A storming debut effort, and one that I suspect and hope will only aid the band's escalation upwards over the rest of the year and beyond.

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:34 am

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Young Guns - All Our Kings Are Dead

Rating: 8
Having built up an impressive fanbase off the back of last year’s ‘Mirrors’ EP, Young Guns have done the believers justice with their debut full length. ‘Crystal Clear’ and ‘Weight Of The World’ are initial standouts, with stadium-sized choruses and angsty lyrics that were made to be shouted along to. The rest of the album follows suit, but to save you from becoming immune to its epicness, with every immediate anthem there’s a slow-burning guitar hook that emerges underneath. ‘All Our Kings Are Dead’ fires on all cylinders, so prepare to be blown away.

Amy Bangs

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:41 am

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Review: Young Guns – All Our Kings Are Dead

It’s been onwards and upwards for High Wycome quintet Young Guns. This time last year, the band had barely unleashed their highly-successful debut EP Mirrors, and now the world is treated to the real deal, something highly anticipated. A full-length has been on the cards for a while, and while opting to release it on their own grounds may be a risky move for them – if it sounds anywhere near as good as is expected – it’ll be a very clever move indeed.

All Our Kings Are Dead is as massive as they come, proving within the first few minutes as the band go all guns-blazing into Sons Of Apathy‘s heavy bassline and grand, anthemic gang chorus. The difference between the almost hour’s worth of material on here, and the sixteen minutes of Mirrors, is that the EP was quickfire, and very accessible. This, on the other hand, is a more sublime, crafted beast – there are tracks that really take some listens to get into fully, and it’s a much bigger and better gift once that secret has been cracked, Meter & Verse and the sing-along Stitches standing out as the main culprits in this department.

A cheeky re-work of Weight Of The World manages to find it’s way onto the album, and it still fits right in at home. Luckily, there’s still more than enough new material, twelve tracks really wetting the music buds – something bands releasing records really skimp out on these days. One niggle in a couple of songs comes in the form of singer Gustav Wood’s vocal production – it feels a bit echoey in parts – though it may well be an attempt to make the songs sound “bigger”, it’s simply not needed – Gus has a fantastic voice, and it needs more moments to shine cleanly, like old single Winter Kiss, which also gets an outing on the record.

The great thing about Young Guns, is that for a straight-up rock band, they’ve got a very individual sound – it’s hard to pinpoint them, and that’s what really makes this record so exciting. There’s slow moments, massive riffs aplenty ie. the huge-sounding Elements, and simply great pop-rock songs, like current single Crystal Clear, which really showcases the band and makes them an all the more special prospect.

It’s clear that All Our Kings Are Dead is going to do some massive things for this band, and greatly deserved too – they haven’t gone out to sell records through a name, they’ve worked at it with some simply fantastic songs, and this record, the culmination of the fruits of their labour, is going to put them in a completely different ballpark. Absolutely flawless!

- George Cannings.

All Our Kings Are Dead is self-released July 12th!

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:47 am

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Young Guns - All Our Kings Are Dead
posted by: Joost78 on 27 December 2010

High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire based rock band Young Guns once opened for Bon Jovi and coincidentally or not, Jon Bon Jovi wrote and performed the soundtrack album for a movie called Young Guns II. So I'm afraid these guys might be fans. Somewhat to my relief I don't hear any Bon Jovi influences though. Young Guns takes it cues from the more modern stadium rock acts, their sound borrows more than a little from 30 Seconds To Mars, My Chemical Romance, Lostprophets and the likes.

It's no small feat that this band played the main stage of the Reading Festival just a month after the release of their self-released debut album, and that said album reached #43 on the UK album chart (and #3 on both the Indie and the Rock chart). So Young Guns must be doing something right. And I have to admit that indeed they are. The sound is warm, layered and as professional as it gets, the performances are flawless, the solid songs go down smoothly and the singalong choruses are bombastic and do their best to overwhelm.

The slick professionalism of Young Guns does come with the usual cons. 'All Our Kings Are Dead' sounds too safe, too slick and too calculated to make this album in any way essential. Young Guns takes a tried-and-true formula, works with it as well as anyone else, but neglects to take it anywhere new and interesting. Every bit of every song seems specifically designed to have large crowds of people either singing, jumping or clapping along and that does make this album sound fabricated.

But for what it is, I have to say that this is a job well done. And with the cool fold out lyric sheet and the inclusion of the EP 'Mirrors' as a bonus, this band gives it's fans value for money.

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:49 am

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REVIEW: YOUNG GUNS

YOUNG GUNS
All Our Kings Are Dead
LIVE FOREVER/PIAS

Any partisan of the UK's patchwork rock communities will have done well to have not at least heard of Young Guns over the past few months. Seemingly tagged for success by the same intangible force that, once upon a time, selected Lostprophets, Funeral For A Friend and Hundred Reasons to have their moments in the sun, this High Wycombe quintet’s slow but sure chug toward the big kids pool seems, at this stage, unlikely to be derailed.
With the likes of Kerrang and Radio 1 dishing out coverage hand over fist, while an appearance at 02 Arena supporting Bon Jovi, some smartly placed billboard ads and an incoming main stage slot at Reading & Leeds hoist up the perception politics, it would appear that all Young Guns need to do now is deliver the right record, knuckle down to some hard-core touring and the UK will spread open like a voluptuous oyster, their potential gateway to the world.

Good news for the band really, that All Our Kings Are Dead is almost certainly the right record.

Intriguingly, as with most of their singles thus far (Crystal Clear being the exception), the album’s strength lies not in immediacy, Young Guns rarely serving up the easy hook you might expect or allowing their pop edge to dominate the musical landscape. Instead the band seemingly specialise in growers, in songs that improve and endear with each repeated listen, the likes of Sons Of Apathy, Stitches or Beneath The Waves gradually creeping under the skin, working their effects like slow release pathogens rather than bullets to the brain.
Mind you, once the payloads are delivered, the effects are twice as deadly, Young Guns’ most memorable melodies circling in your hippocampus with more insistence than anything to be found on the recent, altogether more flaccid Kids In Glass Houses and You Me At Six efforts put together.
Elsewhere on this polished and surprisingly diverse 12 tracker, Young Guns tease out a harder edge - D.O.A heartily channels Artist In The Ambulance era Thrice while Elements is pure riff n’ bounce – and indulge in all out rock balladry, the goosebump beckoning Meter & Verse all but screaming out to echo off some stadium walls.

Ultimately, All Our Kings Our Dead is the all important Right Album, but it's also a bonafide full length, one that draws strength from the sum of its parts, rather than putting all its eggs on a handful of frontloaded radio baiters. And it’s this very caretaking that, as well as securing Young Guns their spot in the big leagues for right now, may well ensure that they actually stay there for quite a while.

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:59 am

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Young Guns 'All our Kings are Dead' Review

Surprisingly Not Awful

It's fair to say that High Wycombe's band Young Guns debut album is not going to change the world (but then again how many debut albums do?), nor is it going to damage it in any conceivable way. It's also fair to say that it's not an album aimed at my particular demographic, but by no stretch of the imagination is it a bad/indifferent or dull offering. All our Kings Are Dead is a perfectly acceptable foray into inoffensive poppy style metal (you may not like it but it's still metal). Following in the footsteps of such bands as Bullet for my Valentine and 30 Seconds to Mars, the album has some catchy tunes (I found myself warbling along to Winter Kiss) some decent hooks and solid production.

I had a quick glance at their gruelling touring schedule (which is packed solid for the rest of the year) which shows to me they are willing to put the in the time and the leg work to make it in the sometimes bitter and jaded world of metal, and they aren't just sat waiting for 'fame and fortune' to land in their lap, and I say good on 'em I wish them the best.

The teenage angst market will eat this up and I can see the band being very successful, no it's not groundbreaking but so what? Honestly, given the choice I would much rather my Teenager was listening to this as opposed to all that N-dubz type nonsense which could be rotting their intellect and destroying their ability to compose a sentence that doesn't comprise mainly of txtspk.

Amanda.

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 2:03 am

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Album Review: Young Guns - All Our Kings Are Dead

It can't be denied it's been a pretty exciting 12 months since the release of their 'Mirrors' EP. Playing shows alongside Lostprophets, Taking Back Sunday and even Bon Jovi has increased the bands popularity and opened them to a wider audience. Now with a fair bit of hype behind them, 'All Our Kings Are Dead' sees the light of day and is likely to win over more fans.

Recent singles 'Sons Of Apathy' and 'Crystal Clear' kick off the record strongly with the bands tight, melodic hard rock style with the former bring a anthemic atmosphere that soars, whilst the latter is a pounding slice of radio rock that fits the bands style well.

Throughout they keep up their momentum with tracks like 'Weight Of The World' and 'D.O.A.' have plenty of weight and their well-tempo approach mixed with brilliant vocals from Gustav Wood being a main stay from start to finish.

Elsewhere 'After The War' is a more laid back Young Guns with a nice atmospheric complimenting the bands intricate guitars. Whilst 'Winter Kiss' and 'Elements' soar strongly and keep you interested, as the bands how presentation is approachable and pulled off well.

Towards the end of the album, 'At The Gates' is captivating merely because of Wood's highly impressive vocals before 'Beneath The Waves' gives us one last blast of straight-up rock.

Over the space of 50 minutes here, there is enough to keep you interested and the bands overall talent lives up to whatever hype they have. Additionally their craftsmanship is one of honesty and does not see the band becoming something they are now. Instead we're given twelve impressive pieces of rock that is both heavy and approachable. Whilst this may not seem instant, after a few listens you finally start to appreciate the bands hard work.

4/5

'All Our Kings Are Dead' by Young Guns is released on July 12th through the bands own label, Live Forever Records.

Young Guns on MySpace, Twitter and Facebook.

Sean Reid

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 2:23 am

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ALBUM REVIEW: Young Guns – All Our Kings Are Dead

Hardly able to resist literally sinking our teeth into this album, the anticipation of what was to behold with releases ‘Sons of Apathy’ and‘Crystal Clear’ providing such a tantalising tease, there was no persuasion needed to listen to the album once, twice, thrice… Repeat.

The lyrical depth throughout the album is carried on waves of collective instrumental talent, whilst the themes within the album are carried through by tales of mortality and God, reality and ignorance, light and dark and a relentless struggle between war, love, seas and mountains. The album is a deep dive into darkness within the heart of this band, with the search resulting in a collision of power driven riffs and musical dives, hunting melodic sounds ready to damn humanity, followed by forceful swarms of instrumental power.

The songs intertwine through relentlessness and resilience throughout, with ‘Son’s of Apathy’ introducing the listener into the world of Young Guns, whilst the album explores their portrayals of love, the power of war, societies self depletion and death…

Though at times the thought of the reality portrayed feels irrevocably downtrodden, it leaves you a sense of empowerment. The unyielding march yet unpredictability of drum beats, the emotion evoked within the guitar and the bass riffs leave you gritting your teeth in aggregation of Gustav Wood’s conviction within the lyrics. The album progresses with the quality of the songs equally as individual and all worthy of release.

Young Guns artistically alleviate the generic issues and topics of our generation, with the grandeur of the sea, power of the gods and thoughts of our mortality, they have created a style and richness in the quality of this album rarely seen.

If you are awaiting the release of ‘All Our Kings Are Dead‘ on July 12th be assured it’s worth the wait, be assured it’s powerful and be assured you will have it on once, twice, thrice… Repeat.

9/10

Written By: Catherine Foley

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PostSubject: Re: All Our Kings Are Dead reviews   Wed Oct 12, 2011 2:49 am

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Young Guns - All Our Kings Are Dead
The most hotly tipped band in the UK deliver on their debut.
By Phill May // Rating: 4/5

If High Wycombe’s Young Guns have longevity, it’s entirely feasible in a few years time we’ll find them referenced in the English dictionary under ‘anthemic’. Combining catchy hooks, soaring vocals and memorable vocals and cramming them into tightly packed, uplifting songs, 'All Our Kings Are Dead' lives up to all that was expected of it. Good words have been flowing their way from fans and critics alike, and this debut more than clarifies what these people already knew.

Cringe as you might to the comparison, the band have the same intention for their songs as Bon Jovi and - to bring things out of your uncle’s record collection – 30 Seconds To Mars. These songs might not fill stadiums, but they were born for such places. Opener ‘Sons Of Apathy’ is a towering tune destined to get rock club punters red faced from howling out the chorus. Follow-on ‘Crystal Clear’ has the fresh-faced energy of The Blackout (or whichever South Wales band you think of first), and single ‘Weight Of The World’ is a phenomenal album highlight.

A little more variation could have seen this become the year’s finest album, but they stick mostly to the stratosphere with their soaring anthems. That doesn’t mean they’re incapable of changing things around, though – ‘After The War’, 'Meter & Verse’ and ‘Stitches’ slow the pace down and the fantastic ‘D.O.A.’ will prove catnip for those who like a mosh. Nevertheless, the album gives us a few soaring choruses too many, but make no mistake, this is an incredibly strong debut, and more than enough to make you believe they’ll be sticking around.

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