Los Angeles based band Young Winona captured a sense of insatiable angst this year with their pop-punk EP Killer Daisies, a collection of three piercing singles easily relatable for anyone feeling lost, isolated or confused. And let’s face it, after two years of a pandemic, lock downs and general unrest, we can all relate.
Young Winona’s new music came after a yearlong hiatus in 2020 after lead singer Cassie Gaffaney experienced a deep personal loss: the loss of her adoptive father, one of her biggest supporters. Coming back from such a raw experience, the band worked tirelessly to record their new material, re-invigorating their pungent sound and playing some explosive shows along the way, including a rebel rousing night with Jagged Baptist Club and Not a Friend over the summer.
With plenty of fuel to craft emotionally potent singles, the band channeled all their energy into tracks that range from aggressively rocking to perfectly aloof. The bulk of Killer Daisies deals with the darker sides of human emotion and behavior while also trying to overcome these negativities.
Inner turmoil in full effect, Young Winona’s music rumbles with a gnawing hunger that comes straight from the emotional gut of Gaffaney who pulls from feelings of isolation and uncertainty spurned when she and her bandmates left their home country of New Zealand in 2014, adjusting to a new environment, and then experiencing the death of her father in early 2020 only to return to L.A. amidst the chaos of the coronavirus pandemic.
Confronting some serious mental demons through this EP, Gaffaney’s wavering sureness of the self is put on full display with her bandmates by her side as they perform a musical exorcism to rid themselves of these unwanted thoughts. In the lead single, “Killer Daisies,” Gaffaney unleashes a torrent of energy and watches as jagged emotions intersect within her. While her vocals capture both a sense of apathy and frustration, she ultimately tries to overcome these malignities to keep on moving forward in life. Paired with the confrontational “Confess” and nihilistic “L.A. Waste,” Killer Daisies courts the underbelly of the human psyche in an intricate, sometimes contradicting dance that is mesmerizing to behold.
Young Winona is comprised of band members Gaffaney (vocals), her husband Nick Gaffaney (guitar) and Geoff Maddock (bass). All three are expat New Zealand nationals who as a unit, have carved a comfy spot for themselves in L.A.’s music scene, bringing with them influences from their home country and experiences growing up.
Moving into the new year, Young Winona have poised themselves to expand on the energy and momentum they’ve created for themselves this year.
Words: Patti Sanchez
To view more of our 2022 featured artists, and / or Grimy Goods’ previous years’ Artist Forecast, visit our Forecast page for the full list of talent.