Think of the charming, brutalist skyline of Bradford and it’s everlasting rainy grey skies; brimming with Brits longing for when the thermometer hits 12 degrees and it’s deemed socially acceptable to whack on a vest and forgo any form of responsibility. Whilst we are far from the days when we lather ourselves in SPF each morning, a certain quintet who hail from the West Yorkshire city are equipping us with a glimmer of faith in the fact we don’t have too much longer to wait in the form of their debut album.
Meet Fling; a wonky pop, psychedelic outfit who seem to be the product of The Kinks and Foxygen running into each other at great speed. Taking inspiration from screamadelica, 90’s Britpop and the 70’s art rock era on top of that, their sound is a coalescence of each genre, making them difficult to pinpoint, however easy to become infatuated with.
Their shiny new LP, ‘Fling Or Die’, opens with the dreamscape melodies of ‘Welcome to the City’, a fun, foolish offering that speaks of a freaky intergalactic little green man taking his first struts on Planet Earth. Akin to the wonderfully weird Bowie track ‘The Laughing Gnome’, it’s breezy rhythm balanced against the outlandish narrative is a perfect mix.
Followed by the atmospheric, sun drenched layering of ‘Extra Special’ and the beautifully off- kilter romance displayed in ‘Annie’, a love song that resonates in the most contagious of fashions, the band’s carefree yet energetic persona is palpable throughout. ‘Je T’aime’, a song which makes you wish you’d brushed up a little harder on your DuoLingo skills, illustrates a softer side of allurement, a delightfully gentle French chorus coated only by acoustic and keyboard.
Tip-toeing through to the hazy, slightly melancholic yearnings of ‘I’m Fine’, and ‘Girl’, simple in it’s lyricism yet awash with harmonica solos, layered vocals and a honky tonk American flair, Fling have a remarkable ability to showcase their talent across eleven ditties that somehow seamlessly flow together despite their differences.
Concluding with ‘Black And White Fibbers’, it’s slacky, somewhat heavier sound conveys the struggle in society whether to believe whatever the media feeds us is the truth or a mere distraction. It blares out with the line“I don’t watch television, because I don’t like the screen.
Those plastic people doing plastic things”, an address to a Kardashian-obsessed world that is puppeteered by those in power. It’s powerful message tied with the anthemic raucous of the track makes for a suitably fitting close for ‘Fling Or Die’, and leaves the listener certainly sure on which option they’d pick.
Words: Becca Fergus
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