- Dan Hayes
LIVE: Flyte @ Arts Club, Liverpool
It’s been the bones of two years since I last attended a gig and until Thursday night I didn’t realise how much I truly missed it. I’ll be honest, I was a little nervous having yet to be in a large crowd of people since the start of the pandemic. Yet the bubbling anticipation of the queue, the organised chaos of the bar, and the warmest room you’ll ever set foot in, all accumulated to a comforting feeling of normalcy. With many in the same boat as myself, the place was brimming with excitement. As people filled into the dimly lit Arts Club, slaloming through the crowd in search of the bar, countless variations of merch paired with eager smiles and jovial conversation clearly showed what this gig meant. After releasing one of the best albums of 2020, Flyte had been waiting a long time to be able to play for their fans. An incredibly candid and profound album that had literally brought people together after an incredibly hard year through a record that articulated experiences they’d had so perfectly.
The Deep Blue opened the show with thick, lush harmonies. Playing wonderfully to the eager crowd who were more than happy to join in for the closing chorus of their final track He Said, She Said. Fake Laugh followed, eliciting countless shushes from the crowd to those in the back at the bar as he played a stripped back and incredibly intimate set.
The lights dropped and that all too reminiscent cheer for what was to come erupted. Flyte took to the stage, accompanied by Fake Laugh on guitar, M Field on keys, and Suren De Saram on drums in Jon Supran’s absence, launching into the opening five tracks from their latest album. An entirely visceral performance combined with the alleviation of anticipation filled the packed room with an electric buzz. I’ve Got A Girl roared as lead-singer and guitarist, Will Taylor launched into the climatic slide-guitar solo laced with a fuzzy distortion as fans sung it back to them, underpinned by the thumping bass and the impeccable, tight-knit cohesion of the band.
Later in the show the band depart the stage for two tracks leaving Taylor alone to do an incredibly intimate rendition of fan-favourite White Roses. Despite the mentioned absence of the backing of The Staves, this pulled back version was astonishingly personal as the crowd provided the choral backing throughout before erupting into applause as the song drew to a close. The rest of the band had the crowd bouncing once again in no time with a throwback for their older fans with their Radio 1 aimed, Toto inspired, yacht rock track Light Me Up.
Upon returning to stage for the expected encore, Fake Laugh and M Field beautifully slot into the stellar vocal arrangements for Flyte’s version of Archie, Marry Me. With Liverpool being the 9th stop on their UK tour, the band have learnt a thing or two about this track, requesting that just for this song, fans didn’t join in due to the difficult harmonies. While many mouthed along, the room happily obliged. Hauntingly beautiful harmonies echoed around with the slightest hint of reverb hanging onto the end of each line.
You can the rest of Flyte’s tour around the UK & Ireland below and find tickets here.
20th - The Caves, Edinburgh
21st - Riverside 2, Newcastle Upon Tyne
24th - Rescue Rooms, Nottingham
26th - Patterns, Brighton
28th - O2 Empire Shepards Bush, London
27th - The Grand Social, Dublin
28th - Ulster Sports Club, Belfast