The Flight One’s self-released album is a simple, poppy, at times lo-fi affair. It’s heavily electronic, even pushing into techno territory but more often than not, rolls back on itself, becoming bland and staid.
More Than I Should sets the tone for the album. Lo-fi beats, whispered YouTuber singing. Music that could have been made on GarageBand. Yet the lyrics convey very simple, very real concerns. Going over and over the same old thoughts about the same old people. It’s simple and pleasant, even if the wind chimes are a bit distracting.
Serious Essential pushes the boat out a little but makes the mistake of hiding vocals behind Daft Punk style electronic vocals. Also calling the album Purgatory reeks of pretension, especially when the lyrics remain firmly rooted in the everyday. It’s a bit like having a “break-up” album called Apocalyptic Devastation.
Throughout the album, The Flight One (real name Bryan), hides their voice. Whispering. Mumbling. Even employing autotune as a vocal sleight of hand. Someone You Can Count On reveals a voice that’s not quite been grown into. It’s shaky and lacking in confidence, sadly puncturing a hole in what is otherwise quite a nice tune.
The pining/longing/frustration over “a teenage girl” on the track Purgatory is pretty skin-crawling given the ambiguous age of both the singer and the in-song protagonist’s age. It’s not quite as bad as 78 year old Paul McCartney singing “she was just seventeen”. But it sure isn’t worth naming a whole album after.
It would be cruel to claim the listener was in purgatory listening to this. There is obvious potential. Many tracks begin and end with interesting instrumental flourishes. However, many just contain noise. This feels very much like an album conceived, written and recorded within the same four walls. The Flight One will have to broaden their horizons if they ever want to soar.