Southerly: Youth

While not the most household name, Krist Krueger is quite the musician. With the orchestral pop group Southerly, the Portland, OR, native plays all of the instruments. He is not all alone though as Eli Jemison provides extra keyboards and Sarah Saturday provides the backing vocals. The gang released a five-song EP earlier this year (Champion Of The Noisy Negativists), though none of those titles appear on this full-length disc. Featuring 12 brand new songs, Youth will hit the shelves on Aug. 16.

Containing a steady yet simple and smooth guitar riff, the emotional “Suffer” gets the album rolling. The music makes it sounds like an upbeat track but Krueger lets his feelings out, explaining that there is little effort left inside of him. The nice piano-driven “Do We Believe?” is blissful and this very melodic tune is probably the best one on the CD. The bass-heavy “Youth” follows. While this song varies quite a lot from the first two, it’s still a pleasant one, along with “All Abandoned.”

The fifth and sixth listings, “Her Name Is Forward” and “Lust,” are a bit dreary and not as harmonious as others. As Krueger is singing with an acoustic guitar, “Sacrifice” doesn’t start out very promising but the track does deliver quite a memorable chorus. The disc could’ve done without the very soft, lackluster tune “Going Down.” The album does end on a high note however with “The End Of Adolescence.”

By doing this almost entirely on his own, you’ve got to give tons of credit to Krueger. But while the album starts out with a few decent songs, it unfortunately seems to tail off and get much, much lighter.

In A Word: Mediocre