Steve Angello – Wild Youth [Album Review]

Steve Angello - Wild Youth [Album Review]

Greek philosopher Epitectus once said “No great thing is suddenly created. It takes a long while, but once created, it’s worth the time, sweat and patience.”

The same holds for Steve Angello‘s debut album ‘Wild Youth‘. The album, which sees the light after 3 long years, had its own moments of uncertainty with Angello breaking off ties with Columbia Records to regain the creative freedom he required, releasing the album on his own record label SIZE Records instead. And the end result is quite remarkable.

Channeling the spirit of youth: the rebellion, the celebration of life, a spiritual awakening of sorts; Steve Angello delivers a purely heartfelt album in Wild Youth, portraying his maturity as a musician and the willingness to take risks.

Opening with ‘Rebel Nation‘, with Andrew Watt on vocal duties, the album kicks off with a gritty start, with enough intensity to incite an inner revelation. Building onwards from there, Wild Youth goes from strength to strength, as Steve Angello tells a story in each song. ‘Children Of The Wild‘ speaks of the unfathomable spirit of youth, the need to take risks, and is driven home aptly by the chorus “As children of the wild we make our choices on our own, Our path is full of fear for must be taken all alone.”

Wasted Love‘, the first single off the album, which he premiered in 2014, stands testament to Angello‘s drive to continuously expand his musical palette with new sounds, and the indietronica anthem, with Dougy Mandagi‘s ethereal vocals and euphoric synths, is evidence to the same. Prisoner‘s driving basslines and Gary Go‘s echoing cries for freedom from emotional shackles give the album a new direction, while ‘The Ocean’, where Steve enlists fellow Swede and upcoming producer Saturday, Monday and Julia Spada on vocal duties, symbolizes the inevitable end.

Remember‘ serves as the poignant moment of the album, perhaps serving as a farewell note for his Swedish House Mafia bandmates, Axwell and Sebastian Ingrosso, with Julian Hamilton‘s vocals and Steve‘s arrangement driving home the emotions effortlessly, while ‘Stay‘, in collaboration with Saints of Valory, is a hedonistic, atmospherically lush effort, a sound very reminiscent of Coldplay‘s Mylo Xyloto.

However, the album hits its zenith on the penultimate track, a heartwarming monologue from the man himself, where Steve unravels his story; the murder of his father, the death of his stepfather, the time when he finally started noticing the shortcomings of the society, and how music pulled him out of all the negativity and helped him find his identity. Angello calls for a change in the world through music, wisdom, justice and love, ending the album on a philosophical, cinematic note.

Wild Youth is a far cry from the albums being released today. It takes you on a journey full of emotions, a path of self discovery and revelations. An album in its truest sense, Wild Youth is an experience in itself, and Steve Angello puts his artistic integrity on the line to deliver an album that might as well be one of the finest albums in modern dance music history.

You can buy the album from iTunes (highly recommended) or stream it from Spotify.

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