Island Record’s Flyte took to the stage at Scala in King’s Cross on Tuesday September 19, to a sold out crowd. They were classy and effortless, simplistic staging was aesthetically pleasing and gave off the feeling as though they had invited you into their own living room, making it as personal as possible.
All four of them were aligned at the front of the stage, keys player, Sam and drummer, Jon both placed on platforms. Their backdrop consisted of their logo and album cover behind four retro hollywood style standing spotlights, bringing a warm and intimate yet still atmospheric feel to their set-up.
They opened the show with the beautifully written “Victoria Falls” and as soon as their impeccably timed vocals united together as a group, a wave of warmth cascaded the room. The room was diverse, with a broad range of styles and ages showcasing the appeal to a number of audiences, it was all about the music, it was gracious and far from flashy, so simple yet so effective.
Song four “Sliding Doors” incorporated more of an 80s feel than some of the more antique style songwriting from the other tracks from their debut The Loved Ones. It’s a little psychedelic with a punchy bass line. The gentle and delicate “Orphans Of The Storm” welcomed on stage a string quartet incorporating a folk feel and this fused with Will’s glistening lead vocals, the combination of both closed in the intimacy of the room even further.
This was followed by “Annie And Alistair”. A track so rich with emotions, the relaxingly smooth backing vocals gave a real quintessentially english festival feel. The track painted such a clear picture of a warm evening, with friends coming of age surrounding themselves around a bonfire, as they douse their memories of summer with a flavoured cider. It is just so epically nostalgic.
“Little White Lies” brought something a little more upbeat yet somewhat still melancholic to the set, with it’s undeniable memorable hook line. It is clearly possible to hear the identical translation from the record to the live show, in my opinion there was something much more explosive about watching them live, the buzz of the room did not dim at any moment.
Their ability to play so tightly, the drummers impeccable musicality drove the song forward in perfect timing. Throw any record at these lads and their talent would allow them to Jam it out as if they had been practicing for weeks. One of my favourites was “Cathy Come Home”, it’s so simplistic yet reveals such a poignant message of a girl coming of age and making her own decisions, however detrimental they were.
Their ‘last’ song was “Spiral“, jokingly announcing “you know the drill” hinting at an encore, their fans knowing that songs were yet to be performed. Lead singer Will humbly thanked the room, “there are no words”. Ending on “Spiral” their vocal range soared as they jammed out such a powerful ‘finisher’ as the whole room soaked up the electric atmosphere, in awe of their gracious yet so effortlessly chic stage presence.
On exiting the stage, the crowd erupted into chanting “two more songs, two more songs” and on their return, the electricity from the applause was truly magical as it reflected the true commitment of their fans. They returned to the stage, the lighting only rising minimally to give a romantic feel as their Alvvays’s cover of “Archie, Marry Me” showcased their impeccable vocal abilities as they performed it Acapella.
Flyte felt more than just a band, their on stage chemistry displayed a team. With a slight reverb on the microphone, the harmonies travelled into every corner of the room and gave off an almost gospel effect.
The set closed on “Faithless” which reached Spotify’s New Music Friday in recent weeks and is generally seen as a ‘fan favourite’. A combination of a catchy melody and harmonious vocals made this an alternative-pop tune which feels so purely 1960’s, The Beatles and Tom Petty inspirations oozing from the track.
The classicism of the production so carefully intertwined with modernism, the show was undoubtedly memorable, the crowd at ease from the nostalgia that Flyte’s records send out. For anyone feeling a little lost in love, this four-piece may just be able to feel that gap.
The whole set was beautifully executed and flowed effortlessly between tracks, their passion and humble nature gushing from each one of them. Feedback from gig goers was that because it felt so special to the band, they felt it was a special night for them too.
It is without a doubt from the explosive applause from the crowd that this melodic and timeless four piece will see a career of longevity and success with their story-telling lyrics and undeniable musical ability. It left me almost (surprisingly) speechless.
Words by Jodie Brunning