Niteflights

12/01/10 – The Yorkshire House

Reviewed by Carla Scarano

The night was young but not tender when I reached the Yorkshire House in Lancaster on Tuesday 12th January. A chilly evening though better than the previous days, the streets clean no snow or ice around. There were only about ten people when I entered the lounge at the first floor at 8:30pm. Maybe people chose to keep warm at home, I thought.

I took my time for a drink, relaxed and looked around. If the lounge was almost empty the stage was crammed with drums, guitars, microphones and huge amplifiers.

People were dropping in while a blond boy called Rob Williams wearing a tweed hat was singing: ‘I’m losing land’, ‘Deliver me from this world of misery and self-satisfaction’ and ‘Lemon pie weather, heavy atmosphere’. Great lines and a beautiful voice.

A short break and two blokes stepped on the stage, kind of Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy types, but their real names were John Bassett and Fergus Allington. John was a bit shorter than Stan and Fergus definitely bigger than Oliver and with nice thick, curly, black hair and a short beard instead of toothbrush moustache (but maybe Oliver Hardy had thick curly hair in his youth as well).

They sang with great energy their light folk songs accompanied by an electric guitar and a ukulele which they swapped from time to time. They said they were surprised we came on a “Tuesday night freezing cold to hear this”, which sounded quite unfair because some of their songs were hilarious. ‘Phantom Power’, ‘The boy you gave birth to is twelve’ and ‘It’s hard to be a Killer, it’s hard to be a King’.

Finally the Niteflights band’s members flew on the stage, slim, tall and charming. Sam Hayward, Adam Hartley, Alexander Mandeville, Joe Rowlands and James Johnston, all London based but three of them come from Lancaster.

Their January tour started in Edinburgh and Glasgow on 9th and 10th going on in the North West of England, Lancaster and Manchester, and South, Bath, Cambridge and London.

By then the lounge was full of young and not so young fans, a nice atmosphere of large family party with a relaxed trendy shade. The pressing rhythm of the drums plus guitars sucked our attention and kept us in.

Indie, Folk and Rock with hints of the Blues, a waterfall of original rhythms and free and easy lyrics played with confidence and skill and sung with a captivating voice. ‘Strange ruin’, ‘Loose’, ‘Come close’, ‘I bide my time’ (the slow one, my favourite), ‘S.R.U.S.R.’, ‘Don’t stop but go’…and a new EP with three tracks for three pounds to keep on listening to their fresh sound at home after the concert.

To know more about the fabulous Niteflights visit www.myspace.com/niteflightsmusic where you can listen to some pieces, buy the EP, watch videos and keep updated about their gigs.

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