Youbloom featuring The Young Folk, The Crayon Set and Gangs – Review


Youbloom Sessions at The Mercantile. The Young Folk hosted The Crayon Set and Gangs.

The Youbloom music industry festival took place in Dublin this weekend. Designed for anyone with a musical yearning looking to develop in the rock and roll marketplace, it came in two parts. The first, a two day conference with international show stopping speakers, one to one tutorials with industry specialists, panel discussions and workshops. Alan Mc Gee, Rupert Hine, Kevin Godley all appeared. A strong Irish contingent including Reekus Records Elvera Butler, Kelly McErlean of National Media College and the renowned Eleanor Mc Evoy were just three of the specialists giving honest advice. A vast range of subjects were covered. Everything from building social media fan bases, how to make money for bands on Internet, the history of traditional Irish Music, the role of women in music was available for discussion. The practical side of being in a band, staying in a band and earning from a band was covered from several aspects. “So, you want to be a rock star ?” could easily have been the tagline.

The second part of the festival put the practice into reality, hosting one hundred and thirty three bands and acts over three nights. The venues were set around the Dame Lane district. The Mercantile, Sweeny’s, Odessa, The International, 4 Dame Lane and Bankers all hosted and boasted the best new music in the business. Finding myself in The Mercantile for most of the night I witnessed The Young Folk, Gangs and The Crayon Set.


Pure indie pop lush arrangements filled the air with the onset of The Crayon Set. Harmonies floating into the laneway enticed smokers inside to witness the silken melodies and delicate arrangement of “Wonderland”. Vocals ranging from forceful to delicate throughout the set, delivered “Falling Short”. It came wrapped in darkness with edgy guitar work over shoe gazing Gibson tones. Faint flavours of The Sundays, very early Cranberries and The Julianna Hatfield Three.


A sea of proud family and friends swelled up the venue for GANGS. Supportive enthusiasm and energy awaited the Tallaght foursome as they took their place onstage. The retro modesque upbeat “Daisy” is unleashed into the air. Giving it a blast with Weller swagger, Jordan on vocals delivers a catchy melody over an enduring killer bass line. “Young Employment“ a tale of youth ridden angst strays into The Clash territory. “Poison In Your Liffey Blood“ opens with Oasis influenced phrasing before picking up full fat guitar riffs that powerfully overtake the tune. That riff is destined for advertising. Belting into “Crumbs In The Bed”, an infectious fast guitar delivery, it’s The Jam in places. “Saviour” is their final offering. Dan and James giving it large, oversized delivery in between contrasting vocals that punctuate the song. That Stone Roses riff towards the end adding duration and drama. Showing promise and presence all they need to do now is deliver. Having recently signed to Reekus Records they’ve been in studio. Not long now then till the big reveal on their debut EP.

the-young-folkThe Young Folk played hosts to GANGS and The Crayon Set, ending the night with their inevitable charm. Gracious and thankful for all who attended they even gave credit to Alan the sound engineer. Starting with “Grown”. A trad flavoured tune, with pared back vocals highlighting the honesty and integrity of their music. Reminds me of Conor Oberst from Bright Eyes at times, “This Is The First Day Of My Life”. “A Song About Wolves” follows, almost a lullaby, almost pure in its telling of the tale. “Bright Eyed Thieves”, a new track carries Villagers like vocals, serious lyrics wrapped in silk instrumentation, extended guitar play fattening up the end. “Letters” next, Reminiscent of REM’s “Nightswimming, simple but serene piano parts, “Promise me you’ll never give up.” A folky undertone gathers slight speed, percussion adding depth to this cute little number. “Way Down South” gives out melodic life coaching advice. Enchanting fiddle and mandolin giving lead to the increasing tempo, gathering momentum “When we younger it was so simple, remember my mother screaming from her doorway, you’re gonna hurt yourself, come down from there. ”Charming chimes and fiddle carry it through to the last second of childhood memories… ”Come down from there”. The band are releasing it as a single soon I believe. Embracing the swaying crowd with “Way Home”, a laid back track, layering lyrics over fizzing fiddle that builds and bursts into its folky fuelled pleasure. Currently available on iTunes and featured on their new album “Little Battles.” Finale time for “Hold On To Your Hat”, musical hugs to the audience and numerous thanks to the organisers, The Young Folk are true gentlemen of the road. (No offence lads)

TYF have been hot on the band circuit for a couple of years now. They made it to SXSW this year, secured a publishing deal, got glorious acclaim in the music press and plan to embark on the UK in July. They’re doing Norway, the UK and several Irish festivals in the coming months. Get all their info on

Review by Ciara Sheahan


Lucy Ivan

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