5 Sep 2017

Flyte - The Loved Ones (album review)

Three years ago, I was lucky enough to see Flyte support Bombay Bicycle Club, and I fell in love with their sound. Then it was all jittering, bouncy pop and as they released tracks like Please Eloise, I got more and more excited at the idea of their album. Since then, the four piece have been crafting a newer, perhaps more mature sound, and it's utterly gorgeous. The Loved Ones pulsates with beautiful melodies, swirling harmonies and thought-provoking lyrics.

The album opens with Faithless a track that's been around since the band first started out, it's one of the first songs Flyte wrote together. It's very Beatles, with the production akin to Pet Sounds, with the four piece's impeccable harmonies getting better on each listen. The album has been recorded pretty much live, there is little overdubbing, often it's four voices around one mic. This gives an raw intimacy to each song, and it captures Flyte at their best - live. The whole thing is immaculate, the composition is astounding, it's a complete joy to listen to.

The Loved Ones is 35 minutes of well-crafted melody driven pop, with intelligent lyricism, with each track a stand out. Orphans of the Storm is ever so delicate, an exploration of someone losing themselves in their head, it's also a reference to the book that inspired their namesake - Brideshead Revisted. Much of the album is literary inspired, with Cathy Come Home and the album being named after another Evelyn Waugh novel. This emphasises the character driven narrative of the band's songwriting, . The album feels nostalgic for a time we've never experienced. Flyte marry uplifting, dreamlike melodies with sometimes heartbreaking lyrics so wonderfully, a perfect example being the track Sliding Doors; Morrissey eat your heart out. Archie, Marry Me closes this album, a beautiful acapella cover of Alvvays, with incredibly beautiful harmonies and warmth.

Flyte can be compared to many, Talking Heads and Nick Drake, for lots of reasons, but the important thing is, they have their own sound, like no one else right now. This is a band that takes risks and works hard to create their heartfelt art. The Loved Ones sounds almost like a band at the very top of their game, but I know for a fact this is just the start. This album is excellent, it's bold and beautiful. Flyte have so much potential to grow, this special debut album is merely a blueprint for what they are capable of.


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(Words: Rach Tindall)