Finnders & Youngberg
The open skies of Fort Collins, Colorado run along the edges of rugged earth that make up the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, smoothed by honey locust trees and spruce groves. The Cache La Poudre river, whose French voyageur name translates to “hide the powder,” flows through town, and like the river, Fort Collins’ own roots music heroes Finnders & Youngberg have been a secret held back from outsiders for far too long. With their new EP, I Don’t Want Love You Won’t Give Until I Cry, this quintet of hard-driving roots artists have come into their own, with music that blends raw-edged, tough-as-nails bluegrass with pedal-steel country twang, narrative songwriting, and new-school Americana.
Each member of Finnders & Youngberg is a roots star in their own right, and the combination of five top players is a key to their precision as a band. Guitarist and lead vocalist Mike Finders has one of the most compelling voices in Americana today, buzz-saw hard at times, especially when singing about harsh topics like infidelity (the country roots song “Infidelity”), and softly-gentle, quietly-hurting at other times (as in the song “Lonely Too Long”). Husband-and-wife duo Aaron and Erin Youngberg bring not only wildflower-sweet vocals from Erin (check out the jazz folk title song), but also tight-as-drywall picking from Aaron on banjo and pedal steel. Aaron’s a key recording engineer for bluegrass and roots music in Colorado, and brings a keen ear for mixing acoustic tones to this EP. Fiddler Ryan Drickey is a much in-demand player in Colorado and a remarkably inventive instrumentalist– just listen to his opening riffs on “Hey Ramona.” Twining around Drickey’s racing fiddle, mandolinist Rich Zimmerman completes this quintet, bringing vocals to “Hey Ramona” and a bluegrass chop on his instrument that propels the music.
The songs on Finnders & Youngberg’s EP show a remarkable edge and maturity. The all-original songs are eminently hummable, but the lyrics show the kind of depth you’d expect of hard-lined veterans of the roots music circuit. We’re lucky Finnders & Youngberg won’t stay hidden in the wilderness of Colorado, and we promise you’ll reach for this CD every time you need a breath of fresh, open-country air.
Buy at CDBaby
Buy at CDBaby
“Nebraska” at Southwest Pickers, Albuquerque, NM (November 3, 2011)
“Connie” at IBMA 2012 (October, 2012)
A Day in the Life of Finnders & Youngberg (recorded at KVNF and Paradise Theater April 2, 2011, Paonia, Colorado)
“Driftwood” at the Fox Theater in Boulder, CO (August 27, 2010)
Finnders and Youngberg raise the bar with their new EP I Don’t Want Love You Won’t Give Until I Cry. From Erin Youngberg’s heartache fueled vocals on the title track to Ryan Drickey’s gorgeous strings to all the intelligent songwriting, there’s a new level of maturity here. It’s a collaborative effort on all fronts : this band has taken the big leap and is a major player. -Mollie O’Brien
In this day and age when bluegrass music is fighting the pulls of Nashville-sounding radio country on the one side and post-Newgrass indie posturing on the other side, Finnders & Youngberg are quietly (or not so quietly) emerging as a band very confident in their own sound and identity. Their music is grounded very firmly west of the Mississippi in the thriving bluegrass state of Colorado, but with an originality that sets them above the fray of the many other bands to emerge from the Rocky Mountain State these past several years. Mike Finders is a talented songwriter with a keen sense of the drama to be found in everyday people and occurrences around him, and his bandmates are a gifted bunch of pickers to be sure. But what makes this band so damned enjoyable and refreshing is that they fuse great songwriting with great instrumentation without anybody grandstanding or taking the spotlight away from the SONGS! Every well-placed note, every vocal inflection serves the emotional content of the song in the most authentic, effortless and down-to-earth manner possible. It’s sort of Greg-Brown-meets-Hot-Rize without a shred of anybody’s ego stinking up the room. Watching them grin and pick on stage (and they grin a LOT, with Erin Youngberg’s smile being the diamond of the bunch), you get the feeling like you’re hanging out in the clubhouse with the cool kids, and their record collection suddenly makes yours seem pretty lame.-Kevin Brown, Director of Blue Waters Bluegrass Festival
. . . The second release is an EP from Ft. Collins Colorado Country and Roots music-smiths Finnders and Youngberg titled I Don’t Want Love You Won’t Give Until I Cry – a great listen that not only reminds me of my native Rocky Mountains but forges into some newgrass territory with folk, bluegrass and classic country influences. [sic] Erin Youngberg’s vocal stylings are by far one of my favorite aspects of this group, as soothing as sweet cream over hot cornbread at times and haunting at others. The groups time honored sound has a great modern twist to it that would appeal to a broader audience than say something comparable to straight forward bluegrass and classic country- and they do what they do very well. I wouldn’t be surprised if this group takes off and becomes one of the new staples of the genre. -Mathew DeRiso, No Depression 8/30/13
“This group will have appeal to people that enjoy a mix of styles tossed into their bluegrass salad. FY5 is casting a wide net with this release, and it’s got plenty of good picking and singing to go with the gritty songs Finnders and his gang have assembled here.” - David Thom, Bluegrass Today
“A quintet hailing from Fort Collins, CO, Finnders & Youngberg is making a name for itself in a thriving roots music community with a heady mix of largely original bluegrass, country and old-timey music. This, the group’s second album, ought to give it a leg up on the competition if good writing, solid picking, inspired vocalizing and a near-palpable enthusiasm for its music count for anything.” – David McGee, The Bluegrass Special (Jul 22, 2011)
“The straight-forwardness with which Finnders & Youngberg deliver bluegrass on the album is complimented delicately with large sprinkles of honkey-tonk steel and glorious folk harmonies; all layered with a coating of thick, rich lyrical delivery and songwriting.” – Charlie Englar, Scene Magazine (Jul 01, 2011)
“Their performance breathes like an intimate porch jam, yet the tight arrangements, lilting harmonies, careful choreography around a central microphone, and instrumental precision display the group’s commitment to their music.” – Henri Deschamps, Acousticana Journal (May 06, 2011)
“The musicianship is intricately and beautifully crafted to deliver an unbelievable range of emotional content in a sonically beautiful and highly listenable way; the delivery of FY5 is -your-socks-off impressive!” – Jan Peterson, Pow’r Pickin’ (Apr 11, 2011)