NEW MUSIC: FLYTE – I’VE GOT A GIRL
Track of the Week: London indie-rock trio Flyte return with single “I’ve Got A Girl”, an ode to friendships-gone-by.
Flyte have been winning new fans all year with 2020 singles “Easy Tiger” and “Losing You”; heartfelt notes to ex-lovers, with frontman Will Taylor’s lyrics so frank and direct that it felt somewhat voyeuristic – almost a little bit wrong – to listen too intently to. Like hearing a drunken couple at the next table stage-whispering their grievances to one another, and ‘accidentally’ eavesdropping on their very private conversation…
This time, though, romance has nothing to do with it; Taylor writes in a newsletter that the new single discusses “breaking up with a friend and band member”. Flyte, who are by no means a band in their infancy, discovered ex-band member Sam Berridge busking in a London Underground station many moons ago, but would ultimately announce his departure with an Instagram post in Summer 2019. Although the lyrics may have us believe otherwise (“I’ve got a girl / She hit the road and I killed the music”), the three remaining members assure their fans in their handwritten email that no hard feelings are harboured towards Berridge or his partner; “I’m certain that his lovely girlfriend had nothing to do with it. He had just fallen out of love with us and that’s the sad truth of it.”
“Listening back to the song all I really hear is me, Nick and Jon having an incredibly cathartic time together. We recorded it very late at night and more than a little intoxicated.”
To dress hurt up as vitriol with a touch of tongue-in-cheek humour, make hooks out of meta references and break the fourth wall whilst maintaining a modicum of mystery is no easy feat. “I’ve Got A Girl” is captivating, and at its core a brilliant pop song with singalong nursery-rhyme type melodies. Flyte recall their experience of recording at Tim Rice-Oxley’s (Keane) studio; the rhythmic piano played by Jon Supran throughout the track is the same one used on a lot of the biggest Keane records, and Taylor was chuffed that he got to play two guitar solos. “It’s The Darkness all over again,” he gushes, “I’ve never gotten to do a solo on a Flyte track before I don’t think. Glorious.”
My partner introduced me to Flyte last year, and I won’t try to disguise that we’re big fans of the band’s inimitable sound. Upon hearing “I’ve Got A Girl”, we immediately questioned the choice to release it as the third single. Third! They must have fought some temptation to place it front-and-centre, the face of the new album campaign. I’m sure they had their very valid reasons, but we all could have done with this release in the midst of lockdown blues…
Of course, my opinion of the timing of the release does not detract from the sheer quality of “I’ve Got A Girl”, from the immaculately passive-aggressive lyrics right through to the sophisticated pop-gone-wrong-in-the-right-way production. If you weren’t a fan of Flyte before, you are now. If you weren’t following their journey in anticipation of the forthcoming album, you’re about to be.
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