By TAYLOR FARNSWORTH
Millennials filed into the Palace Theatre in Albany on Thursday night to listen to the American indie rock band Young the Giant. The positive energy illuminated the crowd, while the band performed songs from their third album, “Home of the Strange,” as well as previous works.
Formerly known as The Jakes, Young the Giant’s “Home of Strange Tour” is claimed to be one of the band’s biggest statements pertaining to immigration in the United States. The album touches on experiences each band member has faced while in the States, being that the majority of the members are of differing ethnic backgrounds.
Sameer Gadhia, on vocals, embodied passion for his music through the strength of his voice. Gadhia showed he could range from an R&B style while performing “Elsewhere” to producing a piercing falsetto in the song “Art Exhibit.” With Gadhia’s vocals, and the talent of his bandmates, the harmony of the band provided an unforgettable experience for those in the crowd.
The concert clearly succeeded with its expectations of entertainment, through the use of vibrant, colorful lighting, quality sound and audience enthusiasm. The political statement made in relation to inclusivity and acceptance was obvious through the lyrics and commentary from the band. Where some could argue that the arts isn’t a place for politics, Young the Giant clearly feels otherwise. Their theme for the album of a “modern American immigrant’s story” was evident throughout the concert.
As fans in the crowd screamed for an encore, the band returned to the stage to play two more songs, and concluded with “My Body.” The crowd sang and danced along with the band to the song. The band’s energy was continually contagious throughout the entirety of the set list.
Band members Gadhia, Jacob Tilley, Eric Cannata, Payam Doostzadeh and François Comtois met back in high school, and after graduating, they put aside school and began playing with one another. The inspiration for their music came from their European and Middle Eastern roots, forming a sound that is similar to that of Coldplay.
The band began playing music in Irvine, California and was eventually signed by Roadrunner Records back in 2009.
Since hitting it off with their self-titled first album in 2011, the band has gained a relatively large fan base. Some of the band’s most well-known songs originated from the first album, including “My Body,” which was on the top five on the Billboard’s Alternative Songs chart, “My Apartment,” and “Cough Syrup.”
The band announced their Home of the Strange Tour back in May of 2016, and kicked off the tour in Nashville, Tennessee. The tour will continue in a variety of different states and venues through September.