New Jersey fuzz-pop-rockers, YJY, had us with our fists in the air with their much-appreciated anti-gentrification anthem, “Through Being Hip.” Luckily, we didn’t have to wait long for new music! The band’s new EP, The Same Noise, was recently released and if we have anything to say about it, it’s anything but typical. Reminiscent of New York indie outfit, I Love Monsters, YJY doesn’t shy away from honesty, making them shine brighter than any of their counterparts at the moment.
Lead singer/guitarist Steve Sachs shared some thoughts on each song off of The Same Noise in this exclusive track-by-track commentary. Enjoy while you take the EP for a spin below!
“Summer Lifeguard” was written pretty quickly, during a time when Dave and I were living together. We were playing together almost every day, just messing around, and a lot of our songs came out of it. The main guitar riff came out of one of those moments where you go, “wait, wait, what was that – do that again!” We just kept messing with it and added a chorus, and there it was. The lead guitar part was actually the very first thing I played when I recorded the demo. It was completely improvised and it was initially meant to be a placeholder, but I liked it, so we kept it. The solo came later, right before we went into the studio. Up until that point, I had just been improvising the solo the same way I’d done with the lead line.
“Past My Prime”
“Past My Prime” was written in the shower, of all places. It started with the melody and the lyrics and me just kind of singing quietly to myself. As soon as I got out of the shower I rushed over to my guitar and recorded a video of myself playing the tune into Photo Booth on my Macbook. The song was really inspired by the band Hunx & His Punx, and by a band from NJ called Con Leche, who was the best band to come out of our hometown. The lyric is pretty straight forward: it’s from the perspective of a guy who used to be the shit, but now he ain’t shit. Maybe you’re laughing at him, maybe you’re crying with him. Either way, your interpretation really says more about you than it does about him.
“Through Being Hip”
“Through Being Hip” was written after a stop into a boutique consignment thrift store where they buy up shirts from Salvation Army and then mark up the price to like 30 bucks a shirt. I wrote this after an interaction with the person behind the register that left me feeling frustrated. I was curious who this person was before they adopted certain trends and I was curious who they’d become once they dropped them. I think Ricky’s guitar part really makes this one special.
“Evergreens” was written in a few parts. I had the melody and the chords floating around for a while before I brought them to Dave who led the way as we wrote the lyrics. Again, the lyrics are about the ache of nostalgia that never quite leaves when you think about an old relationship, whether romantic or platonic. Losing a friendship can hurt just as bad as losing a relationship, sometimes worse. This song is about the way that loss feels. When we recorded this, we told the engineer we wanted two acoustic guitars, one on each side of the mix, playing alternate versions of the rhythm part in addition to the electric rhythm part in the center. He thought it was going to sound like garbage, but he trusted us, and it came out exactly as we envisioned it. One person’s trash is another person’s treasure.
The Same Noise is available now here.