East India Youth – prog trance meets synth-pop

Journalism course LondonBy Cai Trefor

First published in Clash Magazine 02.05.13

East India Youth is the alias of Bethnal Green-based 22–year-old producer William Doyle. His recent debut EP, ‘Hostel’, was issued by The Quietus after the (people behind the) website of the same name were so impressed by his material that they had to release it themselves.

Before going it alone, Doyle was the frontman for Southampton-based indie-pop outfit Doyle And The Fourfathers.

Of this period, Doyle says: “I was worrying before, trying to convey topics and themes, and I didn’t feel like I was expressing myself enough.”

William Doyle

Now, Doyle feels that he is creating music that comprises a truer reflection of himself. “It’s a bit more abstract,” he says. “Rather than facing issues head on, and spark a debate, I’m looking toward escape.”

Escape is certainly a word that comes to mind when hearing the nine-minute prog-trance track ‘Coastal Reflexions’ (listen to it above). But Doyle’s pop-orientated background ensures that, however abstract he becomes, there’s always a trace of melody present.

“It’s not one of my intentions, as such,” he says, regarding his balance of experimentation and accessibility. “But I do think that my history of being a songwriter is going to fall into whatever I do in electronic music. The melodies fall into the song structures naturally.”

It’s an organic realisation of the man’s ambition, a pop-minded style that weighs in with heavy digital design. The track ‘Heaven, How Long’ showcases this balance, this intertwining of genres.

“It’s more of a krautrock-y track,” says Doyle. “It’s synth-pop, Gary Numan-like, and ends with a big German-sounding 1970s sort of thing.” It’s certainly one of the easiest introductory tracks in the East India Youth catalogue to date, immersing listeners in a daydream ahead of the more complex arrangements of ‘Hostel’.