I'm happy to present the new self titled album by White Flight, the new solo project by Lawrence, Kansas resident Justin Roelofs. White Flight is full to the brim with some wonderfully "WTF?" moments - honestly, when I first put the CD on, I hadn't read any of the included press or bio information, and I was totally surprised and blown away.
The record starts with these crazy-hot drum breaks and keys (or is that a harmonica?) on "Now" that builds to a crescendo of wild brass that only lets up for a few seconds and transitions directly into the next song. It made me feel the kind of unabashed music-listening-joy that my first exposure to The Go! Team gave me. Honestly. On the rest of White Flight, Justin covers all kinds of ground, but suffice it to say it reminds me of the best moments of the psychedelic pop music of the 60s, plus a little of the funk of the JB's, Beck's Mellow Gold and One Foot In The Grave (Justin's vocal style is very similar), all wrapped up in a tasty roller coaster running-off-the-rails while-blasting-disco-music taco. Delicious.
Roelofs plays pretty much everything you hear on the album, and besides his drums, guitars, keys, horns, etc. there is also a slew of crazy samples that he recorded whilst living in South America for a summer, including a shaman singing and snippets of children's songs. Wild stuff. This makes all the more sense when you know, in the bio about the album, there is mention of Justin imbibing Ayahuasca (a psychedelic herbal brew used by shamans in rituals that contains an MAO inhibiting alkaloid and N,N-dimethyltryptamine, aka DMT) in Peru as part of his travels. Intense. (Which reminds me a bit of the new Vice Guide to Travel Book/DVD - get your mitts on it, seriously. the Lab has it or get it direct from Vice)
So basically this fits in, albeit in an indirect or simply parallel way, with the psychedelic disco stuff I've been writing a lot about lately (Pink Skull, Drrtyhaze, Lindstrøm and Prins Thomas, etc). Just substitute the long-ish hair, short beards, sunglasses, and leather jackets for really long hair, long beards and ponchos. In the suburbs.
White Flight is released by Lawrence-based Range Life Records, a label Justin started with Zach Hangauer, to spotlight the other (or perhaps under-) side of of the music scene there. You can download the album directly from the label, or if you prefer, via iTunes. Oh, and there's a video for "Pastora Divine" here that's worth checking out (as well as a couple of others too).
PS: Oh and don't forget, if you're in NYC, tonight I'm rocking not one, but TWO parties: first up, the first of the to-be-monthly party hosted by my pal David Bruno, Pistol Whipped at Fontana's (in the basement) - Fontana's is on Eldridge btw Broome & Grand. Then, around 1am, I'll be kicking it over to Lauren & Leslie's party o' bangers, White Lightning at Home Sweet Home (on Chrystie, just below Delancey). Both parties should be seriously kicking, and I plan on making you dance dance dance!