Hold on Now, Youngster…
April 1st 2008
Arts & Crafts
If Kids Incorporated were to return to the pop cultural radar screen, they would blip to the tune of this unabashedly juvenile band. Los Campesinos! are a group of 7 Welsh youths that have generated what could turn out to be the future prototype for indie pop, or their fifteen minutes may have passed so fast that their influence came and went before the record ever hit the shelves. Hold on Now, Youngster… is a collection of high energy multi-instrument explosions that have been in the works for the better part of 2 years. It is without a doubt one of the most saccharine records I have ever heard. But to its credit, Hold on Now, Youngster… induces excellent spirits as well as that ever elusive urge to dance. It is contrived and trite, sung poorly, harmonies and violins out of tune with the shallowest appeal to be described as punk rock. It is like seeing a 3 year old with a Mohawk on the hip of a Prada draped mother. That having been said, perhaps their naivety is their most attractive aspect.
If Kids Incorporated fails to return then Los Campensinos! should seriously consider their own show. The assembled appearance and style found everywhere from their scratched out and then rewritten lyrics in the album art, to the deliberate branding of their name in their music videos. Hell I even received a baggy of mini-pins with their logo all over it when I bought the record. Their lyrics are clever enough and the instrumentation is really interesting. But there is a youth factor that has been to good effect exploited by bands such as Tokyo Police Club and Born Ruffians. However Los Campesinos! have formulized the attitude and spiked it with a little overt Go! Team Britishness, truncating the ultimate appeal of their music. Another exclamation point? Despite of all of this nose thumbing, Los Campesinos! succeeded in making an extraordinarily fun and energetic record, which complicates much of the criticism levied.