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21 January 2011

Interview: Youngteam.

Youngteam is based in Stockholm, Sweden, and is a 4 piece band consisting of members Johan Angantyr, Peter Eriksson, Fredrik Liljequist and Mattias Hägerstrand.

Youngteam have been featured many times on Northern Star's legendary Psychedelica compilation series (sidenote: WTSH adores these comps) alongside the likes of so many talented bands, both legendary and up and coming artists.

Their sound brings to mind My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive, Sonic Flower Groove era Primal Scream and The Brian Jonestown Massacre, but they also have a particularly unique sound completely their own. According to Northern Star, there is no better way to describe their music than with the title of Youngteam's upcoming LP on the label, Daydreamer.
This is a band to keep your eyes and ears on - Daydreamer is a masterpiece (a review of the LP will be up later today). When The Sun Hits is proud to feature this interview with the band. Enjoy!

1. How was the band formed?

Fredrik: Me and Peter were in another band together, and not really happy about the music, or the situation in general.

I had some songs that I'd had for years, and asked Peter if he could help me to record them. We went to our studio and recorded some of these songs and wrote some new stuff, friends were there helping out....

This gave birth to Youngteam, and our first EP, Missnöjesbandet.

2. Where does the name "Youngteam" come from?

Fredrik: It's taken from Mogwai, their album Young Team. I remember when I first heard that album, it was pretty much what I've been waiting for my entire life.

3. Can you tell us what you've been working on and what you've got forthcoming in the near future (new releases, tour, etc)?

Fredrik: Of course the release of our debut LP Daydreamer, we have been waiting so long it feels almost unreal, honestly.

Right now were working and recording on our NEXT album. We have recorded eleven new tracks so far that will be finished in 2011.

We will tour in the UK in March/April; that's the plan anyway. For those who are in Sweden around Christmas, we will set up a shoegaze & psychedelic night the 8th of January in Stockholm. We'll be playing, also our friends The Early Days, dj sets etc.

Youngteam. Daydreamer.

4. Do you consider Youngteam's music to be part of the current shoegaze/dream pop scene, or any scene at all?

Fredrik: I don't think you can brand our music. We have grown up with shoegaze, and the 80's/90's indie scene and we all love that music.

I think we're a combination of psychedelic rock, 90's indie, a little bit of 60's and shoegaze...

But we don't think about it much, we make music we would wanna listen to ourselves and that is fun to play.

5. What do you think of modern shoegaze/dream pop artists, any favorites?

Peter: My iPod is filled with old Captain Beefheart and Stooges records so its hard to say. But its inspiring to know that there is a scene and an interest for this kind of music.

6. What is the most important piece of gear for your sound? Any particular guitars/pedals/amps that you prefer?

Fredrik: I must say our Jazzmasters and Jaguars that we always use, I think Jazzmaster is the ultimate guitar, the sound, the tremolo, the long scale, good when playing open chords combined with riffs.

Also, it's very good if you use special tunings, as we always do, to create a sound we really like. Phantom 12 string is often used, really downtuned.

I mostly use a LOT of built in reverb from my vox ac30, and add delay from a boss pedal. Johan is using a LOT of delay pedals and reverse reverb. That's pretty much the basic Youngteam guitar sound.

Youngteam. Fade Into Light (live).

7. What artists (shoegaze/dream pop or otherwise) have most influenced your work?

Fredrik: My Bloody Valentine has been my guide through my music life since I first heard them with the Isn't Anything album. For songwriting and guitar style 2 persons have guided me to where I am - Kevin Shields and Thurston Moore. Bands that we really like and I guess influence us in our music are: My Bloody Valentine, Ride, Sonic Youth, Mogwai, The Brian Jonestone Massacre...

8. Can you tell us a little about what you are currently into (books, films, art, bands, etc)?

Peter: It's hard to tell. We all have different lives and interests, but we are joined together making our music.

9. If you had to choose one Youngteam track that was the ultimate definition of your sound, which would it be and why?

Peter: There is a song called "Adrift" which will be on our second album. It's a definition of our sound, but its impossible to pick only one really. There is a demo version of it on our Myspace, I think.

Youngteam. Adrift.

10. How do your write your songs? Collectively or individually?

Peter: Fredrik brings ideas and sometimes almost finished songs and then we all put in our part. And many of the songs don't get their final shape until during recording.

11. What is the most exciting thing that happened for Youngteam in 2010?

Peter: It has to be the mixing and mastering of Daydreamer. And knowing that its being put out next year. We started recording it almost 3 years ago so its been a long wait.

12. What is your philosophy (on life), if any, that you live by?

Peter: I guess you could use the answer from question #8: We all have different lives and interests, but we are joined together making our music.