Youth Fountain Remind Us Of What's Important With Pop-Punk Gem 'Keepsakes & Reminders' [Q&A]
Photos: Moe Horta
The Noise is Ones to Watch's home for all things punk, hardcore, metal, emo, you name it.
In the midst of this most recent pop-punk revival, it's important not to lose focus of Canadian noisemakers Youth Fountain. Combining the likes of scene staples Knuckle Puck and The Story So Far with emo stalwarts Senses Fail, the promising young act is certainly one to keep on your radar.
After originally debuting as a duo and signing to Pure Noise Records, guitarist/vocalist Tyler Zanon recently found himself at a crossroads when co-founding member Cody Muraro departed the band to front label-mates Real Friends.
Now out on the road promoting his latest work of art – the fierce and face-melting 14-track LP Keepsakes & Reminders – The Noise sat down with Zanon to discuss what the future holds for Youth Fountain plus which objects helped inspire his brand new album and more.
To see what the soft-spoken singer-songwriter had to say, be sure to look below. Afterward, make sure to grab a copy of Keepsakes & Reminders here.
Despite always being a vocalist in Youth Fountain, you've had to take on the frontman role since Cody's departure. In what ways have you had to adapt since taking on the role as the sole vocalist in the band?
Tyler Zanon: As far as writing and the art direction for the band, nothing has changed at all in that sense. I would say as far as adapting as the sole vocalist for YF, the main things I've had to adjust to is the business side of things and taking more of a control on those decisions for the project.
With so many bands branching out into different genres, Youth Fountain tends to stay true to the scene by keeping the punk in pop-punk. Can you explain why you choose to embrace your roots and what bands inspire you?
I tend to stick to faster punk/emo stuff since it's mostly the sort of stuff I listen to and grew up with like blink-182, The Story So Far, The Wonder Years, Knuckle Puck, Senses Fail, Forever Came Calling, Handguns, etc. I also really do enjoy the poppy side of this genre as well. I do my best to incorporate a balance between that punk/emo and pop vibe. I'll always try to evolve the sound and polish it however!
One of the most powerful aspects of Youth Fountain are your emotionally blunt lyrics about topics like depression, self-image, & mental health. Lyrics like "searching for something that could kill me quick, give me the antidote for the mess I’m in" makes the listener feel like they took a page out of your diary. What makes you take such an honest approach to your songwriting?
I write exactly how I am feeling in those moments where I'm emotionally broken. I assume that would be the main reason why the lyrics can come across as so honest and blunt. I don't always find it necessary to write something too obscure or complicated with metaphors or similes to get those emotions across.
Both of your albums Letters To Our Former Selves and Keepsakes & Reminders feature ambient interludes. You've referred to the track "Reminders" as a song that sounds like it could be on the Lord of the Rings soundtrack. Do you see yourself taking that further and possibly scoring soundtracks one day?
Great question! Most likely won't but I feel like it's going to become a trope in the music to have some interludes on the records since I've done it twice now. We will see where I'm at for the third record and if more ambient tracks make it on!
The album title "Keepsakes & Reminders" makes the listener think about which sentimental objects stir up old memories or feelings. What keepsakes & reminders of your own inspired you to come up with the concept for this album title?
Mostly a lot of old photographs, polaroids, love letters, gifts from family members and loved ones who have passed or who are not in my life anymore and tattoos funny enough.
You've released an acoustic EP, recorded a livestream, and dropped a full length album all in the last two years. What do you see Youth Fountain doing next?
So far I just have plans to release an EP with a couple of new tracks, release a cover that I've been working on, release the Acoustic volume 2 EP and start working on LP3. Also hoping to tour a lot more and get the word out about the project!