Young Empires recently caught my attention with the release of their groundbreaking Facebook Connect video for “White Doves.” The interactive video incredibly adds images of you and your friends into the video (watch here). The Toronto-based band is comprised of bassist Jake Palahnuk, guitarist Robert Aaron Ellingson, vocalist/keyboardist Matthew Vlahovich and drummer Taylor Hill. Their sound blends together all of the necessary ingredients to ignite an electro dance party.
Amidst the hype, I made my way down to Thee Parkside in San Francisco to catch a night full of indie/electro/pop. As Young Empires got onstage, they started off with “White Doves.” The beat had been laid down before, leading into Vlahovich’s powerful vocals. As he sang, the audio was blown out. That led to a chance for the band to improv. They soon announced that due to technical difficulties, the song would now be the set closer. Up next was “Enter Through The Sun.” This included strong synths that quickly had the crowd moving on the dance floor. Vlahovich passionately repeated the lyrics “we put this house on fire” as he energetically moved around his synth.
As promised, they gave “White Doves” another shot to out their set. To everyone’s pleasure, this time around didn’t include any sound issues. Hearing this song live was great as the soft beat guided us through the entrancing vocals, which carried throughout the song. To set the dance-centric crowd off one last time they played “Against the Wall.” This song has an infectious opening bass line and is flowing with catchy lyrics and synth. Members from opening band Humans (Robbie Slade and Peter Ricq) got onstage to jump around as they drummed on blocks and snare drums. Everyone in attendance was grooving as Young Empires ended the set on a high note.
The audio issues returned throughout the set, noticeably upsetting the band, but this did not take away the energy carried by Vlahovich and the rest of the band. It was a surprise to see a band like Young Empires playing a venue that I labeled as one that primarily featured DIY punk bands. I’m expecting them to soon be playing alongside the likes of elite indie-electro rockers Cut Copy or Friendly Fires. Young Empires are currently in the final leg of an North American tour in support of their debut EP Wake All My Youth. Stay connected with Young Empires on Facebook and Twitter.Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter @bestnewbandscom.