‘Mad On’ by Newcastle-based Counterfeit Youth starts pleasantly enough with a simple 3 chord guitar riff but it’s all just to lull you into a false sense of security because 12 seconds in, drums, bass and really catchy twin guitars come from nowhere to completely change your mood (unless of course, you were already in the mood to jump around the room like a lunatic).
From that point on, the pace doesn’t relent. The radio-friendly verse leads to a bouncy, upbeat chorus that is slightly reminiscent of some of the 80s hair metal bands, even down to the lyrics
“Let’s get mad, let’s have a ball.”
It’s unashamedly sing-along and there’s a refreshing positivity about it.
Production-wise, the recording is very raw, which adds to the energy and gives Mad On a bit of a live feel. For a song of this nature, that’s very much a positive as energy is very much the order of the day: polished production just wouldn’t work.
Counterfeit Youth haven’t attempted to write a song that will change your life. They’ve written a song that’s designed for the listener to jump around to and enjoy and they’ve been hugely successful in that. It’s a song all about drinking, partying and having a good time.
Coming out of the chorus, the huge power chords leave me with the mental image of a room of people all jumping simultaneously with the band. I would imagine that a Counterfeit Youth gig would be an energetic affair. The rhythms constantly change throughout the song – all of them well pitched and exciting – giving a texture and a structure to the song that could well contribute to speeding tickets if the song was listened to while driving.
If you’re looking for meaning and originality, maybe you’re better looking elsewhere but if you’re in the market for a fast, frenetic party song, Mad On really hits the spot.
About Counterfeit Youth
Counterfeit Youth are a 5 piece pop punk/alt rock group hailing from Newcastle Upon Tyne. The band formed in 2016 initially playing covers however soon began writing their own material, taking influences from Blink-182, Biffy Clyro, Neck Deep and Strange Bones to name just a few.
Within a year the group gained a following and were snapped up by Soundhub record label in Belper in the summer of 2017. They began recording of their first single with Soundhub in November 2017 and also released an EP through their own label in April 2018. They are set to hit the road to follow up the release of this EP with a nationwide tour of the UK with their good friends in Namesaké.