Dawn of the Freak by The Haunted YouthRelease date: November 4, 2022
Label: Mayway Records
Belgian songwriter Joachim Liebens and his The Haunted Youth have been creating waves across the European continent even before their debut Dawn of the Freak was released.
It all started with a few initial singles creating a stir in Belgium and the Netherlands and then seemingly in concentric circles reaching other shores, including UK and US. The festival appearances kept boosting their name.
Yet the question always was whether an album release will support the created image that sometimes is just a figment of PR imagination.
Well, Dawn of the Freak is here now, and Liebens, The Haunted Youth and their unabashed pop/rock have an excellent chance to hang on to the initial image that was created.
The reasons for that are quite simple, really. Liebens relies on a relatively clear shoegaze/dream pop combination in the vein of MGMT, Beach House, and sometimes Mazzy Star, the latter in the lo-fi, hushed treatment of vocals.
Yet for such seemingly simple combinations to work, you have to have an impeccable sense of melody and arrangement, in The Haunted Youth’s case guitar/synth combination which all slots snugly in place here.
It is all oh, so catchy and easy on the ear that you simply cannot either complain or stop listening and very often, that is exactly what you need.