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Okay, Youthful: A Q&A with Fine Young Casuals
Posted October 16, 2015 by Seth Johnson
WRITTEN BY
Seth Johnson
ON
October 16, 2015

Raging noise annihilated eardrums as Indianapolis’ Fine Young Casuals tore through a set of demented hardcore on a Friday night in May. Playing at Joyful Noise with Bloomington’s Thee Tsunamis and Indy’s Dirtbike, the four-piece was undoubtedly the oddball on a bill of less intense acts, but that didn't stop them from wreaking havoc on the room.

Having played around Indy for over a year now, Fine Young Casuals (or F.Y.C.s) have been in this position time and time again, ripping through every set no matter the circumstances. This Friday, though, the group will have center stage as it prepares to celebrate the cassette release of a debut EP titled The Gates. For the State Street Pub shindig, Bloomington’s Laffing Gas will join in on the fun, with the much-loved Ancient Slang reuniting for a one-night-only performance. 

 


Check out The Gates above via MFT's player


Seth Johnson: Talk to me about the start of Fine Young Casuals.

 

Tyler Rader (vocals): What’s funny is there were a lot of different people that Adrian tried out for the band, and Derek and me both tried out and didn’t make it. So then, he got Dave Strother and our friend Spike, and they did their own thing for a while. Dave moved to Portland, Spike moved back to Franklin [Indiana], and Adrian needed to find some help. So now, you’ve got this lineup. But, it took damn near a year to get to this point.

 

Adrian Caldera (guitar): Really, Franklin just showed up one day, and we started playing. We wrote songs right off the bat, and then we just kind of kept going. 


SJ: I know some of you guys were involved with Indianapolis’ hardcore scene prior to starting F.YC.’s. How did those experiences influence how you wanted this band to be?

 

AC: Everything that was part of the bands we were in and the people we were around was just your conventional style of hardcore. Everything was just a box that everyone was playing in.

 

TR: Our last groups were Side FX and The Zodiacs and The Sudafeds and Heart Attack Jizzers. All of those bands had great songs and good recordings, and we played cool shows. But, it just was not the right chemistry with any of those people. It was all very destructive at the end of the day. So I’d say this band is just the culmination of lessons learned. It’s like we all get it now. We all know what our roles are, and it’s finally fun. 

 

Photo by Roberto Campos


SJ: A while ago, I remember talking to you, Adrian, about attending a Swans concert, and all the things you took away from that. Talk to me about some of the non-hardcore sounds you’ve wanted to bring into this band.

 

AC: Seeing that band makes you realize that you’re not just playing a guitar. You’re not just playing a bass or drums, or a vocalist doesn’t just say lyrics. It just brought the idea that sound can be created out of anything. And when it comes to us playing together and being comfortable with each other, we all have the leisure to literally take the sound of the band in another direction. We’re a hardcore band, or whatever you want to call it. We still have that idea. So we’re just carrying that influence and trying to make songs with no limits in that regard. We just want to take the sound as far as it can go, and still be genuine and real about our direction.


SJ: Tell me about the process that went into making this debut cassette.

 

TR: We recorded it all in Bloomington at my house and mixed it at the Jacobs School of Music. My roommate and bandmate from my other band [Safe Sex] Sven Carlsgaard engineered the whole thing. We started recording it in the beginning of the summer. It took a long time to get a mix that I was happy with, and I did a lot of different vocal takes. It was a long process for only 12 minutes of music, but I’d have to say it paid off. It’s exactly how we wanted it to sound and doesn’t sound like a normal hardcore recording. So I’m excited for people to hear it.

 


SJ: You said that the cassette sounds the way you wanted it to sound. Can you talk to me a little more about that? How did you want it to sound?

 

TR: I feel like a big part hardcore now is rehashing all of these obscure forms of hardcore. There are bands that I really like that do that, but I wanted to make a production style that moved it forward. It’s cool to do the rehashed shit, but this is a new sound. So hopefully, people are responsive to it. I would hope that it just shows that you can do different things in a production sense. A lot of people are getting into the 4-track, really lo-fi sound. Like, trying to make their demo sound like it’s from the ‘80s, even though it’s 2015. And, that’s kind of tight that people have gotten so good at it to the point where it really just sounds like that, and I wouldn’t be opposed to being in a band like that. But with this, I wanted to move it forward. It would be stupid if we made all of these songs with really thought-out passages, and then it just sounded like some normal-ass shit. So I’d say I’m just happy with it because we tried something different, and I think it worked.

 

Photo by Roberto Campos


SJ: How has this band been a good musical outlet for you guys?

 

Franklin Luna (drums): For me, it’s just a new learning experience because I’ve never been in a serious band. I’m just going with the flow with how everything is going, but it has definitely paid off with the dedicated work that we’ve been doing. 

 

AC: Having come from our musical backgrounds and playing in the scene, a lot of people around the city see us in a different way. But when we play shows [as F.Y.C.’s], it is literally our other side and our other way of living, thinking and seeing the world. So it’s just cool to show your fucking demented, weird, dark side and have other people experience it and let it be welcome. It’s not something that a lot of people are able to do, but we’re able to do it as best friends. 

 

Derek Noll (bass): It’s like we can express our psychosis in a healthy way.

 

TR: Yeah. We’re all fucked up people, and it’s pretty cathartic to just get up and go fucking crazy. But, not in a thoughtless way. There’s some deliberation behind all of it. And, I don’t think we’re any better or worse than any other band that’s doing that around here. There aren’t that many. But, I’d say that we’re the oddballs. I feel like we haven’t played a single “hardcore” show in the last couple months. And, I feel like that is due in big part to the fact that we’re not being pigeonholed into one scene. We’re okay with playing with non-hardcore bands, and we’re not alienating to those people. A problem that seems to come from hardcore is that people who don’t know much about it are immediately alienated from it by these people going completely nuts. I’m not saying that I don’t want that to happen, but it has to be inclusive. None of us are on this punk elitist bullshit that seems to go on in other places I’ve seen. If you’re into our music, talk to us. We’ll tell you what to check out if you’re interested. More people need to be into it, and that’s not going to happen if you just alienate every person who’s maybe going to be interested. 


SJ: Is there a specific show that you remember playing where this inclusive nature was present?

 

DN: I really liked the show where we were on a bill with mostly hip hop. Like, Drayco McCoy and Ghost Gun Summer. We were the last band to play, and everyone went nuts. There were a bunch of hip hop heads watching us who wouldn’t otherwise be exposed to this style. And after the show, they were like, “Yo! That was insane.” Like, they had never seen anything like it, so that made me feel good.


SJ: What are you looking forward to with your tape release show at State Street Pub?

 

DN: We love Ancient Slang. All those dudes are awesome. 

 

TR: And Laffing Gas playing up in Indianapolis again. More people should like that band. Don’t hold me to it, but I think we’re going to do a weekend tour with Laffing Gas in November. So that should just illustrate how much of a kindred spirit we are with that band. They’re one of the few other bands that are trying to take ‘80s hardcore and make a different sound with it. I’m just excited to play because we got the exact show that we wanted 

 

AC: Yeah. We played our first show with Laffing Gas. And then, the dudes in Ancient Slang are older, but they still know how to appreciate the art of what we do and that means a lot.

 

For more information on the cassette release show, visit the Facebook event page.

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