A hot new band is about to take off. Well, maybe not totally new. Concrete Castles is Audra Miller, Matt Yost, and Sam Gilman. You may know them from their work with their cover band First To Eleven which has amassed over 1,000,000 YouTube subscribers. Each Thursday First to Eleven releases a new cover version of songs from artists such as Metallica, Rage Against The Machine, My Chemical Romance, Avril Lavigne, Taylor Swift, and many others. These slickly produced videos have millions of views with Sweet Child of Mine having over 34 million views. Last year the band signed a record deal with Velocity Records and with that came a new name. Now known as Concrete Castles, the band is working on recording their own original music. Their first two songs with the music label are âJust a Friendâ released in March and their latest release, âHalf Awakeâ.
The Erie, PA band, formed in 2009, has been building momentum for several years. They won the Tri-C High School Rock Off in 2015 and 2016 and also performed at the Vans Warped tour stop in Ohio. They have pumped out over two hundred First To Eleven videos on YouTube over the last 5 years with an astounding quarter billion streams. However, what is really amazing is that the members of Concrete Castles have achieved this success and are still only 19 and 20 years old.
The bandâs sound has been influenced by the differing music styles that each member listened to growing up. While Miller was listening to country, Yost listened to â80s hair metal and Gilman to emo. This is reflected in the diversity of songs they have covered over the years. Concrete Castleâs latest single, âHalf Awakeâ, leans toward the indie pop/rock direction. The song exhibits more maturity than you would expect from a trio of teenagers. Millerâs amazing vocals are at the forefront of the song while the rest of the band complements her without being overpowering.
Miller shares: “The inspiration behind this song was all about having self confidence. Even if youâre going against everything that seems to be correct or the correct path for your life, it doesnât mean youâre wrong! Itâs all about believing in yourself and not letting other people bring you down because you are unconventional in comparison to their views. With this second single, we wanted to show our darker, heavier sound in the instrumental and verses, but still keep the upbeat pop vibes in the vocals and breakdown.â
Concrete Castles is off to a strong start with their first two singles. With Audra Miller’s stunning looks and voice, along with the band’s sound, this a musical group that is ready to soar. It will be interesting to see what their future releases bring. BTW. If youâre a fan of their covers donât worry, they are continuing to release weekly videos as First To Eleven on their YouTube channel.
Follow Concrete Castles & First To Eleven
What is your favorite cover song by the band? Comment below.
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