Turning singing into simply one other hue in a smeared instrumental palette – and burying vocals to the purpose of obscurity – is a divisive hallmark of shoegaze. Not so with Melbourne quartet Flyying Colors, who newly emphasise lyrics on their second album whereas nonetheless paying strong tribute to the reality-bending subgenre.
A number of refrains throughout ‘Fantasy Nation’ even unfold like hopeful incantations, beginning with the album’s very first line on ‘Goodtimes’: “I simply wanna have a great time / I don’t wanna waste my complete life.” Echoed by guitarist/vocalist Gemma O’Connor, songwriter/frontman Brodie J Brümmer goes on to muse in regards to the easy surprise of getting out within the sunshine amongst blue skies and singing birds – nearly like a yoga solar salutation, however in music kind.
‘White Knuckles’ later follows go well with with a gap mantra (“White knuckles / eyes open”) that evokes the self-actualising “Gotta be above it” chant heralding Tame Impala’s 2012 album ‘Lonerism’. There’s a darkish aspect to voicing these internal monologues although: sung primarily by O’Connor at a hypnotic lilt, ‘OK’ references taking drugs to fight on a regular basis malaise earlier than slipping into the cynical, if considerably liberating, refrains “Throw all of it away” and “By no means gonna get it.”
‘Fantasy Nation’ isn’t a downer, although. Brighter and extra upbeat than Flyying Colors’ 2016 debut ‘Mindfullness’, this album showcases splashy jangle and effects-streaked melodies at each flip, with clearer vocals and a wider vary of sound than ever earlier than. And it’s typically fairly joyous, from the New Order-meets-‘Dancing In The Darkish’ vibes of ‘It’s Actual’ to the rhythmic keyboard stabs punctuating the closing ‘Boarding Cross’.
Even because the temper shifts dramatically from music to music, which fits the putting contrasts within the music itself: see the obvious relationship examine ‘Massive Mess’, which is concurrently so poppy and so noisy whereas continuing at an exhilarating gallop. Brümmer’s pillow-soft vocals evoke the early shoegaze days of cult US band Lilys, but there’s a tangible push-pull between harshness and sweetness that additionally summons each Dinosaur Jr. and twee-leaning Sarah Data bands.
Musically, these syrupy sermons are all about motion and layers, with bassist Melanie Barbaro and drummer Andy Lloyd-Russell crafting entrancing grooves beneath the spacious dream-pop vistas. Jamming out extra on ‘White Knuckles’ (the longest music on the document), the band discover the overlap between driving Krautrock, dank ’60s psychedelia and danceable Madchester. These are pop songs made swirling and nearly hallucinogenic, but all the time fairly managed.
Whereas ‘Mindfullness’ was a promising flex of Flyying Colors’ deeply studied shoegaze credentials – ticking all the appropriate bins, however not sounding fairly like their very own band but – ‘Fantasy Nation’ turns that dense, heightened mode of supply to extra heartfelt and relatable songwriting. Not solely can we hear the phrases, however their which means is magnified and enriched by the oversaturated swath of sounds. These songs promise realisation and launch – provided that you’re prepared to give up your sense of course a bit alongside the way in which.
- Launch date: February 26
- Document label: Membership AC30/Poison Metropolis Data