Mogwai Young Team

Mogwai Young Team (also known as Young Team) is the debut studio album by Scottish post-rock band Mogwai.


Mogwai Young Team was recorded in Summer 1997 at MCM Studios (now known as Chem19 Studios) in Hamilton, Scotland, and was produced by Paul Savage and Andy Miller. The album features extreme dynamic contrast between quiet and loud, a technique which Mogwai are well known for. It is largely instrumental, with one notable exception ("R U Still in 2 It"). It features limited instrumentation, consisting mainly of guitar, bass and drums, although other instruments can sometimes be heard throughout the album, such as glockenspiel ("Tracy"), piano ("Radar Maker", "With Portfolio", "A Cheery Wave from Stranded Youngsters") and flute ("Mogwai Fear Satan").

When questioned about his opinion on Mogwai Young Team, Mogwai guitarist Stuart Braithwaite has said:

The album was a total disaster. We were young and naïve and had too little time. We should have said; "No, the record isn't done until six months later." Instead, we sat and mixed whole nights and felt bad. We didn't talk to each other. When the album was released, we just wanted to forget everything. We were certain that all critics would pan it, honestly. After that, we understood that we had think stuff over that we recorded.

Mogwai drummer Martin Bulloch has also given his thoughts on the album:

The recording of Young Team was fucked up. There were quite a lot of sketches going on. I think the whole of the first LP is angry. It was the mood of the whole thing - there was a lot of anger about.

Despite the members of Mogwai's negative opinions about the album, Mogwai Young Team was listed as #97 on Pitchfork Media's Top 100 Albums of the 1990s , and is considered their best by many listeners, including Kele Okereke of Bloc Party, who cited Mogwai Young Team as the record that changed his life.

Album title

Mogwai guitarist John Cummings explains the source of the album title:

When you're young, there are always gangs; "Oh, you can't go up there because there's this gang hanging about." None of us really were part of all that, but it's what we went to school with and just remembering the things that we used to see greatly amuses us. When we went on tour before we recorded the first album, we were getting quite silly. That's when we made up all our alternate names. And we decided that we were Mogwai Young Team: a gang. We got quite excited by a kind of tour madness and started writing "MYT" and we got a bit carried away.
The "MYT" logo found inside the cover was created by Adam Piggot. John Cummings and Dominic Aitchison both have tattoos of this logo on their inner left arm and neck, respectively. Mogwai sometimes perform live with a giant replica of the "MYT" logo behind them. The Japanese sign on the cover reads "Fuji Bank". The picture was taken and inverted by Brendan O'Hare.

Track listing

All tracks were written by Stuart Braithwaite, Dominic Aitchison, Martin Bulloch, and John Cummings, except "R U Still in 2 It?", lyrics by Aidan Moffat.

  1. "Yes! I Am a Long Way from Home" – 5:57
  2. "Like Herod" – 11:41
  3. "Katrien" – 5:24
  4. "Radar Maker" – 1:35
  5. "Tracy" – 7:19
  6. "Summer" (Priority version) – 3:28
  7. "With Portfolio" – 3:10
  8. "R U Still in 2 It" – 7:20
  9. "A Cheery Wave from Stranded Youngsters" – 2:18
  10. "Mogwai Fear Satan" – 16:19


Mogwai Young Team was re-released in May 2008 on the Chemikal Underground label, packaged as a remaster of the original album with a second disc containing rare tracks from the Young Team sessions and live recordings. Of the second disc, only "Young Face Gone Wrong" was previously unreleased, the following three tracks had earlier appeared on various compilation albums and other such releases.

  1. "Young Face Gone Wrong" – 2:58
  2. "I Don't Know What To Say" - 1:15
  3. "I Can't Remember" - 3:14
  4. "Honey" - 4:18
  5. "Katrien (live)" - 5:31
  6. "R U Still In 2 It? (live)" - 8:01
  7. "Like Herod (live)" - 7:53
  8. "Summer (Priority) (live)" - 2:59
  9. "Mogwai Fear Satan (live)" - 10:26


Release history

Mogwai Young Team was released in various countries in 1997.
Country Release date Record label Format Catalogue number
United States 21 October 1997 Jet Set CD TWA07CD
United States 21 October 1997 Jet Set Vinyl TWA07
United Kingdom 28 October 1997 Chemikal Underground CD CHEM018CD
United Kingdom 28 October 1997 Chemikal Underground Vinyl CHEM018
Australia/New Zealand 28 October 1997 Spunk CD URA013


External links

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