Photo of Max Stockin and Ryan McMey - Precious Youth single cover

A few years back, my single reviewing journey started with a short write up about the new single “Them” , by local duo The Fidgets. Since then, I’ve reviewed countless amazing songs by a variety of local artists, loving each one and being grateful for the opportunity to share my honest opinion on the talent on offer in our area. My musical heart has always held a soft spot for The Fidgets, so now that both former members , Max and Ryan, have reunited to collaborate on a new single, it seems only fitting that I have the pleasure of casting my ears over their new offering. Both have matured musically, independently, and both offer up distinctive styles of their own, so of course it interested me to discover how they gel together nowadays.

“Precious Youth”, released on 23rd October, is the result of the much anticipated reunion of Max Stockin and Ryan McMey. Social Media build up to the release shows these guys are passionate and excited about their music, which for me truly translates as their melodic vision reaches its completion into a solid track to be proud of.

The two guys back together, alongside the theme of the song, brings along an overwhelming sense of undeniable nostalgia.

Their voices blend together and harmonise whilst keeping their recognisable individuality.

“Precious Youth” is a fun song written around a month ago, to reflect on times gone by, and also a nod to a time before quarantine and lockdown, making it a relatable track on all levels.

Speaking of the track Ryan says “it is a song that sounds a lot like the kind of stuff I was aiming for in the last few years of The Fidgets. It’s pop, but holds the quirkiness that defined the band. With the lack of anything to do over the last year, it’s got me harking back to old adventures.

Max adds “We started writing in mid-September, with no theme in mind, but not wanting to write another love song. I liked the idea of writing about childhood, memories from growing up and the innocence and simplicity of life when you’re a teenager, it really is your Precious Youth”.

The track opens up with a verse where the guys take it in turns to paint a picture of life in their late teens, waking up hungover and eating junk food, but without a care in the world. An easy life compared to what we are all faced with in current times.

The song is pure easy listening, it’s reflection and memories wrapped up in an perfectly enjoyable bundle. The second chorus chimes about times on the road back from London, laughter ringing through, before a slower section puts forward the boys message to not take the good times when you’re younger for granted, as those times pass quickly, with maybe little to show. Hold onto those memories.

The guys both like Rex Orange County, the style and approach to writing lyrics being a big influence in this track. Interesting subjects and a way with words helps a track become more memorable.

The chorus is simplistic but infectious, a combination that is guaranteed to help the melody and words stick in your head on repeat. Which is a good thing, it’s “feel good” reflection, and a brilliantly enjoyable reunion of wonderful stand alone artists. The future is very bright for both Max and Ryan as solo artists, which is where they now truly shine, but I can’t be the only one hoping this isn’t the last time we hear from them as a duo.

By: Kate Ford

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