It would be easy to avoid describing Carrigan's unique sound by simply comparing them to Radiohead‚ but I'm making a point not to. I would be lazy to describe how "Sunshine Through The Waves" finds frontman Zack Martin channeling Thom Yorke‚ from his hypnotic wailing to the minimalistic chords he plays on acoustic guitar‚ so I won't do it. I mean‚ I would be such a shitty writer if the only thing I had to say about "Moving Bones" is that the first 30 seconds could pass for a slower take of Radioheads' "Optimistic‚" so I'll ignore such obtuse classifications.
Delving beyond amateur comparisons that I would never make‚ lies a band full of inspired original concepts‚ waving a banner that reads Young Men Never Die. Although this notion of immortal youth is intriguing‚ Carrigan were wise to create an album with urgency seldom found in men who know they will live forever. "We Give No Quarter" gradually builds a somber energy that seamlessly transitions into "Valladolid." Although lyrics in early tracks can be tough to decipher‚ Carrigan keep songs interesting by treating vocals like just another instrument. This holds true in the second half of Young Men‚ when the group ditch vocals for exploratory instrumentals.
"Theodore‚" the first instrumental‚ is an acceptable change of pace at the midpoint of the album‚ but when "Davey Jones Locker" goes sans-vocals a mere two tracks later‚ it gets tiresome. Amidst stripped-down jams‚ we find rumbling bass relief in "The Dwarf‚" possibly the most mainstream rock song on the album. While "Dwarf" is a meaty cut‚ it doesn't come soon enough to keep all listeners engaged throughout.
At the end of the day‚ Carrigan show a lot of promise on Young Men‚ but they sometimes falter by trying to do too many things on one album. They posses both mainstream rock and trippy electronic credentials‚ but they've yet to master a balance between the two. Fortunately for Carrigan‚ young men never die. Eternity will give them plenty of time to perfect their sound.