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Friday, 22 August 2014

BUZZIN! The Flies' Pleasure Yourself

Having already released the glorious ‘One Day My Baby Will Leave You’/‘One Less Heart Beats’ as a signed, ltd edition 7” single, The Flies (Emmy Award winning composers Bob Locke & Tim Norfolk AKA The Insects and vocalist/musician Sean Cook, formerly of Spiritualized/Lupine Howl) are ready to unleash ‘Pleasure Yourself’ (PY), their second LP that has a serious job on its hands, trying to fill those kinky, size 11 sonic boots that sumptuous debut ‘All Too Human’ so rightly strutted it’s stuff in! 


One Day My Baby Will Leave You: Official Video

             One Day My Baby Will Leave You (Joe McGill remix)

Before 'Pleasure Yourself’ is released on Sep 1st, The Flies will also release the self-produced ‘In Her Eyes’/Turned On’ on August 18th, another download or sexy double ‘A’ side affair that features the latter, no less alluring non-LP track. The video (which loosely mirrors the ‘Road Trip’ by fellow Bristolian band Portishead) was respectively directed, edited and graded by the holy trinity of brilliance that is Bill Butt, his son Dan Butt and BBC colleague Linda Engel; take a closer look below…
In Her Eyes: Official Video

As you might expect, 'Pleasure Yourself' will be released on-line for download, but few might expect to see it on such an awesome ltd edition octagonal gate-fold vinyl (I’ll let you decide how much of a nod that is to the similarly, octagonally-inclined ‘Sweet Heart Sweet Light’ album by Spiritualized). It inarguably smacks of understated sophist-erotica and even before hearing a solitary soulful, chart-defiant sound, it’s good to know that my pleasure receptors have already been tickled to climax! 

                                      'Pleasure Yourself' (Front)
Opening with ‘One Day My Baby Will Leave You’, the patiently-paced and beautifully produced tale of love gone awry shines, largely thanks to Sean’s vocal sentimentality, which sets the familiar tone from the outset, before title track ‘Pleasure Yourself’ seemingly sneaks its way into the spotlight.
This is the first we’ve truly heard of The Flies’ sultry, sensual and undeniably disturbing signature sound since ‘All too Human’. Despite an understated intro, our growing desire for The Flies’ dirty essence is eventually satisfied just as ‘Pleasure Yourself’ draws to a close.
‘All I Want’ echoes awesome Art of Noise ambiance, which combined with Sean’s typically casual crooning, adds a sonic oasis of respite to the already snowballing menace. Perhaps as close to accessible as upcoming track ‘Lies’, the rest of the LP surely holds great deviant promise.
No wonder chart success and the big and clever Flies sound remain to exist solely, as two separate entities. Whilst flitting from morose to orgasmic, the sinister, slow-burning ‘You can’t Win’ entrances us, reminding us why The Flies are such an essential yet sorely overlooked aspect of the music scene.
What could be a sister track to the prominent ‘High’ from the first LP, ‘In Her Eyes’ boasts a similarly catchy hook that sinks deep below the surface to bless us with yet another skinful of haunting, psychedelia-tinged listening pleasure… yet another delectable sonic smorgasbord for us to devour!
As previously hinted at, the mellowed out ‘Lies’ actually outdoes ‘All I Want’ in terms of accessibility.  As it unfurls, the multi-layered ‘Tender’ (Blur)-resounding composition stands only in the shadow of an emotive chorus sung with such life-affirming longing, it’s sad to hear its systematic obliteration.
First-time Flies listeners should expect their internal pressure levels to fluctuate, because they’re one band we can rely on to intensify and capably exploit any sense of subjugation.  Lingering like a hard to shake memory, the sullen, stripped-down ‘No Wonder’ smothers and stifles from the start.
‘Part of Me’ starts by summoning the same (live) Phosphorescent sound that’s now had me suckered in for months, proving itself perfect for earphone-enchanted people to perch at the dock of the bay.  After some familiar Flies’ crescendo-driven cacophony, the calming close serves as a sudden treat.
Next, we sojourn in Mungo Jerry’s & Max Headroom’s collective sunny subconscious, as ‘The Usual Unusual’ lovingly takes us onward amidst battle-worn sentiment that belies the delicious upbeat chorus. The lyric “What is it with this girl/with her it always seems to rain” perhaps says it all.  
Before revealing myriad subtle layers, piano-led ‘Cuts’ joyously languishes under the weight of its own claustrophobia. The vocals are as delicate and delightfully vulnerable as ever, but sadly it seems to end all too prematurely… we all know what that’s like though, right guys?!!
The LP closes on instant classic ‘Into the Night’ and before we’ve had a chance to strap in, the musical majesty overwhelms, leaves us to brood and removes all options but to re-enter the mind-bending, heart-breaking brilliance by starting the album back from the start.
'Pleasure Yourself' (Back)

In support of their LP release, The Flies will also play two live shows.  The first will be on Tues 2nd Sep, 2014 at The Exchange in Bristol and Weds 3rd Sep, 2014 at The Water Rats in London, where they’ll be supported by two local acts respectively, Candy Darling and Thousand Fingers.  

So, what’s changed since the release of their critically acclaimed 2007 debut LP 'All Too Human'? The Flies have enlisted the writing/production prowess of Andy ‘Spaceland' and the skin-hitting skills of drummer Damon Reece.  Each is a long-time associate or friend of Sean Cook who together, were involved in making music with Alpha, Massive Attack, Spiritualized and Elizabeth Fraser.  Thanks in advance for learning more by clicking here and falling in lust with The Flies by following any of the links below…