After a year when guitars all but vanished from British primetime radio sets, there's a need for a band with the brains, brawn and balls to take 2011 and smash it into a brave new frontier of indie rock 'n' roll. A few names have already been uttered in hushed, and erm, not so hushed tones. In Stoke's All The Young, there's potentially one to drown them all out. It's a vintage yarn that the Dooley brothers – frontman Ryan and bassist Jack – with drummer Will Heaney and guitarist David Cartwright, are rebirthing for a generation that's lying twitching on the floor, wailing out for a hit of heady, heavy r 'n' r.
"The thing is, I can understand as much as anyone right now why there's been a lull in proper guitar tunes," pauses Ryan. "People have been waiting for something bigger to come along. When there’s a lull it made me want it more and fuelled the hunger for it." It's with that same faultless drive, determination and ambition that All The Young burst into the world with an album of brick-breaking powerhouse sounds, brought into catastrophic dimensions by none other than rawk royalty GGGarth Richardson, the man responsible for classic albums from Rage Against The Machine, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Biffy Clyro. A fitting collaboration for a band whose whole manifesto chimes with the age-old tale of the lads from a nowhere town, singing about something better than what's outside their door. Following tours with self-proclaimed saviours of UK indie, Brother, and with further dates with Pete Doherty approaching, ATY are readying their own moment of reckoning, with a genuine moment of perfect anthemia.
"We could have been called the Dooleys," chuckles Jack of his four siblings growing up in evergrey Stoke-On-Trent. "Unfortunately there's already a band called the Dooleys, and the two of us didn't fancy it." And so it was that just Ryan and Jack stepped out onto their pub circuit, along with school friend David, in an embryonic yet strutting incarnation by the name of New Education. Before long they were heralded in lead NME Radar features and were ramming sweaty dives across country, satisfying anyone with a hunger for honest British guitar music played straight from the heart. It was all moving along, weathering the drought of guitars in the mainstream and drubbing the underground hard until a timely change of sticksman breathed life into them as Will Heaney joined their ranks. "The new songs we were writing were just different, we just noticed that there was a new energy and attitude in all of us and where we were going."
All The Young were birthed. Suddenly there was a new sense of momentum about them; there was dually a new rebirth of sophistication and rawness about the new band they were becoming. "I think we're not scared to freak out now," nods Jack. "On one hand, as you grow up a bit, you start give a bit more of shit about how you look and hold yourself, so you can see that compared to old snaps, I hope. But at the same time, I remember starting to look around the stage and think, 'What damage can we cause here?’ It's been a real release."
There's one song that all members identify as the ATY ignition point, when they morphed from hard grafting indie stalwarts, to one of the most inspiring frontrunners on a brave new frontier of British rock 'n' roll. "'Welcome Home' was the one when after we first played it all the way through, we looked around at each other in a different way. Like we didn't know we had it in us," says Ryan, wide-eyed. "It means business that one. There's no way you can play it without your heart and soul fully in it." It's a similar effect for the listener too. 'Welcome Home' is an unstoppable rallying call, with avalanche breakdowns, blockbuster riffage and a scorching chorus hook that can't help but ignite a taper in the mind of any lover of good honest indie-rock.
Choruses have never been something that the Dooley brothers have had any trouble coming up with. 'You And I' is an explosive case in point. There's a strident sense of defiance and flair to all the new ATY material, the kind of fist-pumping fodder that festival crowds were custom-built for, and it's hard to imagine 'You And I' impacting a field of muddy punters without getting butterflies. Their debut single 'The First Time' is a driving onslaught of churning bourbon-soaked chords and cloud-bursting hopeful melodies. The lush monochrome promo video defines the slick new swagger, all dizzy abandon, pea-coats, smouldering stares and Brylcreem coiffed bonces. A few select anthems kept their place from the New Education days, namely the soaring heights of 'Another Miracle' and the seismic slabs of power-rock that is 'Today'. Both tracks lay bare the band's core manifesto where the reckless, woozy tones of Hüsker Dü melt with a visceral hit of canonised Brit-rock fronting pairings, from Daltrey and Townshend to the inevitable Mancunian G-bomb. But with Britain waking up to guitars again, it feels like it might just be time for another iconic sibling pairing to find their place in the history books.