Young Knives are sharper than ever

Young Knives
Young Knives
The Darkness. Picture by

Simon Emmett

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With their penchant for pastels, thick-rimmed specs, side-partings and fair isle jumpers, they don’t look like a band.

With nicknames like ‘The House of Lords’, they don’t sound like a band.

And, coming from Ashby-De-La-Zouch, they don’t have a typical band’s background.

But what a band Young Knives are.

Their third studio album, Ornaments From The Silver Arcade, is one of the best releases so far this year.

It tops even their gold-certified, Mercury-nominated debut, Voices Of Animals And Men, and their psychedelic second album, Superabundance.

It was written over two years then recorded and mixed in LA.

Singer, lyricist and guitarist Henry Dartnall explains: ‘When we started thinking about this record, we felt completely free to do anything. That didn’t make things easy.

‘We had previously just stood in a room together and worked with what came out of jams. This time we wanted to push our boundaries, so we had to break from our old mould, which was difficult.

‘We tried all sorts of things like swapping instruments and writing with other instruments.

‘I was looking for honesty in my lyrics. We have often written from a third person point of view but I wanted to get stuff in there that I really felt and write from the heart.

‘It’s much harder to be honest and make good art because you can forget about the flow and sound of the words if you are thinking too hard about getting an emotion across. So we wanted to get a balance of the art of it and the emotion,’ he continues.

This process of experimentation and innovation makes Ornaments From The Silver Arcade the most ambitious Young Knives record to date and proves that the trio are one of the most forward thinking and intelligent acts in UK music.

Their new single, Human Again, is released on Monday. See them next Friday (May 27) at the Wedgewood Rooms in Southsea, with support from The Neat and Flash Fiktion from 8pm. Tickets cost £10 from (023) 9286 3911 or wedgewood-rooms.co.uk.