Melbourne’s own Flyying Colours played a hometown show as part of their ‘Not Today’ tour. Having never seen a shoegaze band play live before, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from the evening but I walked out of Shebeen having experienced something special, and with a new appreciation for the genre.

I walked in as the first support act, Contrast were packing up their instruments and there would have been no more than about twenty punters in the small band room. Just before the next band, Baptism of Uzi took to the stage, the bassist came waltzing into the room, with his guitar bag slung over his shoulder making his way up to the stage to get ready. With such a late arrival, my hopes for the band withered slightly. However, as the band began to play, I realised despite this and their shabby dress sense, the band actually produced quality music. The band played a great set of dreamy psychedelic grooves, setting up the scene nicely for the headline act to follow.

After a short break between sets, the lights dimmed and the four members of Flyying Colours walked onto stage. True to their name, they delivered a dreamy psychedelic set that induced the room into an acid-like trip. Everyone in the front few rows had their eyes closed and were moving fluidly in time with the music. I found myself joining in, closing my eyes and letting the music wash through me. With limited vocals throughout the set, it was mostly instrumental which allowed for the hypnotising effect to take place. At times Gemma’s soft soothing vocals would transcend the music to another level.

The band consists of brothers Sam and Josh Dawes, on drums & bass respectively, Brodie Brummer on guitar and Gemma O’Conner on guitar and vocals. Throughout the set, it is clear why the band have listed My Bloody Valentine as an influence as the flowy vocals and guitar riffs are similar in sound, essentially falling into the shoegaze category. In addition, Gemma’s vocals bring front of mind the soft hush of early 90s female vocals.

Their 2013 single ‘Wavvy Gravy’ was particularly favoured by the crowd, and took me back to David Bowie’s ‘Heroes’. Their new single ‘Not Today’ was delivered with great psychedelic verve and gusto, and Brodie and Gemma join forces on vocals to create a dreamy multilayered number. By now, the crowd was in full swing, swaying uncontrollably to the music. I personally felt that the music held some sort of power over me. Despite being dead tired and having no energy, I somehow found myself moving uncontrollably along to their rhythmic, loud and powerful music.

The show was not only about enjoying watching a band play, but it was the whole experience that each of us had walked out with. Flyying Colours washed the room with their psychedelic grooves and induced a state I have seen at no other gig. It was a happy place, and after the hectic week I had, it was exactly the right way to wind down and forget all that came before. Thank you Flyying Colours for helping me appreciate a genre that I had previously dismissed and for creating powerful music that would force a statue to sway.

Kimberley Salmond


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