27 May 2022
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Built - Album Review: We've Been Hoping You'd Wake And Now You Have

03 Feb 2022 // A review by Kev Rowland

Dean Young is probably best known in New Zealand for being a radio DJ on stations such as Radio Hauraki and The Rock, but he has also been producing and releasing his own material since 1998 in different bands and guises. He started using the name Built a few years back, with the last release being the 2018 EP Here's To Sweet Sabotage. In March 2021 he took stock of what material he had worked on since then, and was somewhat surprised to realise he had 10 songs which just needed some TLC and vocals. The album title came to him when he was thinking about the songs, which had been sitting around on a hard drive. He says, "it's like they were sitting there saying to me, we've been hoping you'd wake up and find us and now you have".

Dean is a one-man outfit, and although it was mastered by Josh Wood, Dean performed, engineered, and produced everything himself. What strikes the listener immediately is that the arrangements and production are not what one has come to expect from many NZ bands, and I wonder if that is because he is exposed to so much more music than “normal” people. The first time I played this, I was reminded instantly of Muse, as the production is incredibly polished, with driving drums, riff-hungry guitars which dominate when he puts the hammer down. He is also not afraid to suddenly switch to a falsetto and gentle backing, before allowing the volume and passion to come back. This use of contrast allows the softer elements to be just that, while when he allows the guitars to distort and come back in over the top it has even more impact.

Although not originally intended to be a concept, the songs do have a loose narrative about a person who wakes up one morning and although they feel the world has totally changed everyone else carries on as if it is completely normal. There is a complexity here, yet also a simplicity, with a yearning which reaches to the listener and grabs hold of them and brings them in close. It is spacious and spatial, with the listener able to take their time to truly get inside the music and mind of Dean, understanding the passions and emotions, and just when it feels everything is on one level, he suddenly breaks free, with Skullduggery being very much a case in point. There is knowledge that while in the foreground everything is meek, there is much more coming, and when he lets it out it rampages before being carefully tucked away again until the next time.

This album is totally enjoyable, with some downtuned monster notes, all combining into an album which feels very modern, British, and definitely worth seeking out.

Rating: ( 5 / 5 )
 

About Built

Dean Young, musician, producer. Whose day job is a now 25-year-and-counting radio career - which at one point saw him fronting breakfast radio shows around New Zealand on Radio Hauraki along with The Rock, and nowadays behind the scenes.

He has also been writing/performing and producing his own music since 1998, swapping out the band-of-actual-humans option in favour of a solitary studio project where he took care of everything from the writing to production.

It was a Tauranga home studio where this journey began with the project breathingunderwater yielding the EP Aquatic Ceremony in 1999, the full length Horizonchrist in 2000 and the EP Prayers to Broken Stones in 2001.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Built

Releases

Here's To Sweet Sabotage
Year: 2018
Type: EP

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