Photo by Daniel Hjorth

Danish rockers Yung arrived with their debut album, A Youthful Dream, in 2016, and it was filled with punk-laced guitar pop, simultaneously scruffy and sharp, and often life-affirming. Now back with their follow-up, Ongoing Dispute, they sound like they’ve been emotionally tested and are now out to prove something. Their new LP is, at times, tense, as they try to make sense of where they are and where they’re going, but its unexpectedly intricate riffs and fits of rip-roaring joy both cut through and complement that emotional tension. They’re most exuberant and captivating on “Unresolver” a big-hearted track wrapped in stylish post-punk, jangly indie and explosive, warped garage rock.

There’s more to the stormy atmosphere that runs through Ongoing Dispute than that, though, as Silkjær can attest. “I did get my own head out of my ass, for a change!” he laughs. “In the past, I’ve always written about me, and my life, and things that affected me, but this time, I started talking more about things that affect everybody. I was thinking about the things that aren’t working in the world; there are songs about those kinds of problematic structures. There’s a song on the album called ‘Dismantled’; we had to dismantle our self-image as a band to move forwards, and I had to dismantle my self-image as a songwriter, too.”

Recorded over two sessions at Dreamland Studio and the tiny, now-defunct Studio One (so-called, Silkjær jokes, because you can only fit one person in at a time) and produced by the band’s regular sound tech Neil Robert Young, “Ongoing Dispute” is an ode to perseverance, collaboration and triumph over adversity. It represents the dawning of a new era for the band, the one that A Youthful Dream should have, and the title, says Guldborg Tarp, perfectly encapsulates the dynamic that has driven Yung forwards, out from under that black cloud. “Ultimately, that’s what the writing of this record was – an ongoing dispute. We come in to write and we’re referencing completely different bands, but every time we wrap up a song, we’re excited about it. It reflects the lyrical side of the record, too; it’s like the last few years of coping with the world have been an ongoing dispute for us!”

Yung:

Mikkel Holm Silkjær, Tobias Guldborg Tarp , Frederik Nybo Veile , Emil Korning Zethsen

“Unresolver” · Yung from the album “Ongoing Dispute” on PNKSLM Recordings Released on: 2021-01-22

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