By Rya Backer
There, at our annual Super Bowl of music and spectacle, sandwiched somewhere between Lady Gaga’s (I mean, Jo Calderone’s) monologue and Lil Wayne’s shreds were a group of young guys from Irvine, Calif., making their television debut with a whole gang of fans bused in from their fair city to cheer them on.
Young the Giant steamrolled through their standout single, “My Body,” making the whole of the room (and those watching at home) believers in their mission of delivering anthemic rock, heavy on melodies and choruses you’re itching to sing along to (listen to their other single, “Cough Syrup” for further reference).
I’d wanted to talk to them further ever since I saw that performance, replete with frontman Sameer Gadhia’s well-choreographed falls into the crowd. And I’m so happy I was able to, as these five guys are much more than a band. They’re best – and I mean best – friends, even admitting to having lived together for the past five years in various houses. Their last one also housed a Jacuzzi tub that some members embraced and others (namely, guitarist Jacob Tilley) very vocally avoided – a fact I only know because offering the five some downtime to just be themselves rendered a lightning in a bottle/secret sauce concoction that was so exciting to watch. They were honest, open and so excited to sit down and share some slices before soundcheck. Not unlike the fans in the audience on VMA night, I was so happy just to be there.
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