Young America, the second album by The Design, is a steady stream of rock that is reminiscent of Heart and Pat Benatar. The Design, which got its start in 2005 when drummer Bryan Smith paired with Katherine Robichaud, uses their latest album as an exhibition of Robichaud’s range, the stylistic guitar work by Michael Yaeger, and drum work by Smith. Young America maintains its stamina throughout, giving both new and familiar listeners a strong indicator of what their live shows offer. Whitaker’s voice is a showstopper, as the lyrics pour out of her with striking vigor. Her vocals strongly complement the lyrics throughout the album, which would be trite otherwise.
When the band headed into the studio to record, they had a clear picture of the album they wanted to record. Robichaud says their only expectation for the album was “to have fun and make a rock ‘n’ roll album that made people shake and sweat.” As work began on the album, it became clear that it would be difficult to find time to fully devote to recording while touring. Robichaud explains that “[as] a full-time working band… we weren’t able to take off a month from the road to record the album. It was basically three days on the road, one day to rest, and three days back in the studio. I had to be very cautious not to wear my voice out. Scheduling was crazy. We basically worked around the clock with very little rest.”
The Design is full of energy and passion, which is clearly evident on this album as each track passes by. From “Scream”, which provides a stunning introduction to listeners, to “Get It Together”, which showcases the band’s power, the band has found a way to put their style of old school rock at the forefront of its genre. As the album comes to a close, tracks like “Young America” and “I’m Going Home” slow the heart rate of listeners as the band finishes with Robichaud’s signature vocals ringing in their ears.
With their second album out of the way, The Design continues to focus on touring and expanding their audience — as any band would. As for future plans, Robichaud explains that The Design plans “to start working towards a third album and to break into new cities we’ve never played before.”
Young America is available now at The Design Music.