The Haunted Youth
Dawn Of The Freak
04 Nov 2022
What a year it’s been for The Haunted Youth! And the best is yet to come for the band centred around Joachim Liebens (29) with the release of debut album ‘Dawn Of The Freak’ on November 4, marking the pinnacle of a dazzling ride that started in the spring of 2021.
The Haunted Youth became indie darlings in Belgium and The Netherlands from the very first single they released. And what’s more, early singles like ‘Coming Home’ and ‘Gone’ also attracted attention in the UK and US straight away, earning praise from such big names as Consequence and NME. The Haunted Youth even made ‘Song of the Day’ (‘Coming Home’) and went in heavy rotation (‘Broken’) on influential radio stations such as KEXP and KCRW. Furthermore, the band gained international Spotify support, featuring on several playlist covers both in Belgium and internationally.
The international release of the album is preceded by the single ‘Teen Rebel’, a dream pop anthem you think you’ve known all your life and that will stay with you all your life. The previous singles also return on ‘Dawn Of The Freak’, like close friends that wrap their arms around you, raising the glass to celebrate life with all its highs and lows. Because for all the highs The Haunted Youth have experienced so far, Liebens has had his share of lows in life. For him making music is a way of facing the demons of his past and writing them out of his system. “It’s therapy, a way of dealing with my existence”, Liebens says. “And I hope this album will be universal and accessible enough for others to enjoy it in the same way.” As dark as the lyrics often are, as a whole and musically the album exudes salvation and connection, implying that it’s okay to feel like shit sometimes. And “it’ll all be over someday soon, I promise you”, Liebens leaves a glimmer of hope in closing song ‘Fist In My Pocket’.
Liebens put his heart and soul in ‘Dawn Of The Freak’, writing all the songs and producing the album. The music of The Haunted Youth echoes the shoegaze and dream pop of musical heroes like Slowdive, The Cure, My Bloody Valentine and DIIV. But the band also has a very characteristic and instantly recognizable sound with that typical dreamy guitar, melancholic synths and Liebens’ velvety voice. A sound both the seasoned indie connoisseur and the average festival goer love, judging by the live sensation The Haunted Youth have become in no time, and the rapturous reception at festivals like Rock Werchter, Best Kept Secret, Pukkelpop, Tomavistas, ESNS and Reeperbahn (including a nomination for the prestigious Anchor Awards!).
The Haunted Youth will be playing sold-out album release shows in The Netherlands and the Main Hall of legendary Brussels venue Ancienne Belgique, followed by an extensive string of release and festival shows all over Europe in 2023.
Dawn Of The Freak
I Feel Like Shit And I Wanna Die
Fist In My Pocket