Q&A with The Young Rapids

photo courtesy of The Young Rapids


The Young Rapids are an indie-rock quartet based in Washington, DC. Their sound blends moody and melodic guitar, melancholic vocals, keys and percussion into an often dreamy, sometimes dancey blend. Check out their album Day Light Savings here.  The Young Rapids plays DC9 this Wednesday, November 5th. We Love DC’s Alexia recently asked the band a few questions, and here’s what they had to say.

Alexia: How did Young Rapids come together as a band?

Colin: We’ve all been musicians in one way or another in a lot of different projects, but Dan and Joe started playing music together in 2009. A year later they called Nick up to play guitar. As a trio, they wrote songs and played a few shows. About a year later, I crossed paths with them. The former sound of the band eventually gave way to a new and more ambitious one that’s still being explored and tempered with.

Alexia: How would you describe your sound to people who haven’t seen/heard you?

Nick: We’d probably call ourselves an “art rock” band. We definitely give 110% at our live shows, and try to have as much energy as humanly possible. I’d say check us out if you appreciate music that is somewhat challenging, yet rewarding in scope. We try to offer as much honesty as we can in every way. Instrumentally, lyrically, and even through our recording techniques.

Alexia: Was there one artist/song/album that made you fall in love with rock music?

Joe: Definitely not just one. I can remember the white album being played a lot when I was a kid. I was always so intrigued by the “number 9” song. I thought it was crazy weird, so it caught my attention. My dad was a huge Zappa fan. He used to tell me about these parties he’d have with all Zappa playing all night. That always sounded like my kind of party.

Alexia: Are you all originally from the DC area? If not, where are you from? What do you feel about DC’s creative community/scene?

Nick: I’d day Colin is closest to being an actual DC native. He grew up off Macarthur Blvd., which is only a few minutes from the city. The rest of us are from the suburbs. Rockville, Potomac, Germantown. WE LOVE DC :) Really though, we’ve met the nicest people, and played such awesome shows. We receive great support from the artistic community, and we think that people who say nothings going on in DC are crazy. Our favorite artists are from this city.

Alexia: If you could collaborate with one artist/band who would it be?

Dan: I think we’d all agree that it would be someone we actually know. Our friends are in awesome bands that blow us away every time we see them. If we could get some of the folks in PREE, some from The Sea Life, and some from Teen Mom, we’d have a pretty bangin’ lineup. Throw some Shark Week in there for good measure, and that would be pretty unstoppable.

Alexia: What inspires you?

Colin: Everything inspires us to be honest. We just recently moved out away from the city, in a kind of farm house, and it’s really invigorated our creativity. We’re also very inspired by each other. Often times, another persons input can be the most awakening perspective, and that usually gets everybody really excited. All of our newer material is extremely collaborative.

Alexia: Any bands you’re listening to right now that really excite you?

Dan: New PREE songs are stuck in our head right now. Deleted Scenes has been on repeat since we saw them at Red Palace a few months back. We’ve all been delving pretty deep into our record collections which have become communal. Recent mainstays include Donovan, Oscar Peterson, and Paul Simon. Those are literally just pulled right off the top of the record stack. I also just saw this awesome band called Caddywhompus from New Orleans at Paperhaus and they were unreal. Unbelievable.

Alexia: What’s on the horizon for Young Rapids?

Joe: Touring! We’re working on solidifying road partners and a route, and we’ll be on the road in February. We’ve also been writing a lot of new songs, so I’m sure we’ll give a go at recording some of them soon. We have to develop a new recording scenario in the new house, and we’re excited for that. We might try to do some Zeppelin-esque drum recording in our foyer. We’ll see. But yeah, TOUR!

Check out their song “Goods” here. See The Young Rapids play this Wednesday, November 5th at DC9!

The Young Rapids

w/Villains Like You

The Kickback

& Bobby E. Lee & the Sympathizers

Wednesday, Nov. 5/8:30pm/$8



Alexia Kauffman

Alexia was born and raised in Arlington, VA. She has been a cellist since age four, and a lover of rock & roll soon after. The first tape she owned was “Make It Big” by Wham, and the first tape she bought was Nirvana’s “Nevermind,” and she still loves both. She was a member of local synth-rock outfit Soft Complex for several years, and has recorded with bands including Engine Down and Two if By Sea. By day she works for a non-profit distributing royalties to musicians and labels. She currently plays cello, lap-steel guitar and tambourine in the DC post-folk/Americana band The Torches.

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