Interview: Young The Giant


By: Tyler Sivero
Young The Giant
9 February, 2014

I recently had the chance to talk with Sameer Gadhia (lead singer) and Francois Corntois (drums) of Young the Giant at their show in San Diego. The southern California-based band just released their second album, Mind Over Matter, at the end of January. I was able to snag a few minutes with them before they embarked on the rest of their tour across the country.

Question: You guys recently released a new album. What’s new about it? What can we expect?

Francois: We’ve spent a lot of time on the road, growing as people. As with anyone when you’re working with your craft for a while you want to try and see if you can go and progress it. So I think there’s a little more complexity in some of the song writing and arrangements. We tried to think about things a bit more. Sonically, we tried to push a few things kind of out of our comfort zone, certain sounds we hadn’t really experimented with on the first album. But I think at the end of the day, it’s the same band and we’re just trying to see what we can continue to do.

Q: You guys worked with producer Justin Meldal-Johnsen on this album, right? He’s worked with a variety of different artists from Beck to Nine Inch Nails. How was working with him?

Sameer: Yeah. When we first were considering working with Justin I think we were a little intimidated by him. He just seemed like a young guy whom at the time (and still) seemed like a hot shot, young producer. We just thought that there’d be a lot of stuff with that. Maybe some baggage that he’d bring with himself. Maybe an ego and some stuff like that. But when we started working with him he was really ego-less. Ironically, he brought lots of relaxation to the thing. We tend to take ourselves really seriously and he just reminded us to have a good time.

Q: Being from Orange County, what’s it like playing shows in Southern California?

F: Yeah, we love it. It’s kind of stressful since it seems that we always play the California shows at the beginning of the tour. We have all the friends and family who want to come and see the show but on top of that we’re preparing to leave for two months. It’s a little hectic. We played the Palladium a few nights ago and we were up in Oakland before that. It’s amazing that we played a lot of these towns before when we were smaller. In SD we played the Casbah, in LA we played the Roxy and then to come back and play to two or three thousand people is so surreal and really incredible.

Q: With Valentine’s Day coming up, how do you guys impress your special someone?

F: I actually like to cook and save money so if I can put those things together it works well. I like going to nice restaurants but when you’re trying to go for Valentine’s Day, it’s such a shit show. With going out you’re putting yourself in a position where you’re going to fail somehow. I feel like when you have control of cooking and you don’t have to worry about parking or reservations you can really impress your girl or guy.

If you can, make sure to catch the guys at one of these tour dates:

Feb 11 – Rialto Theatre – Tucson, AZ
Feb 12 – Comerica Theatre – Phoenix, AZ
Feb 16 – Bayou Music Center – Houston, TX
Feb 26 – Tower Theatre – Philadelphia, PA
Feb 28/Mar 1 – Hammerstein Ballroom – New York, NY
Mar 10 – Egyptian Room – Indianapolis, IN
Mar 17 – LC Pavilion – Columbus, OH
Mar 19 – The Midland – Kansas City, MO
Mar 21 – The Pageant – St. Louis, MO
Mar 22 – Riviera – Chicago, IL
Mar 23 – The Rave – Milwaukee, WI
Mar 25 – First Avenue – Minneapolis, MN