In 2014, it seems that trends are popping up and simmering down faster than ever. It’s almost impossible to keep up. I recently went for coffee in a stunning outfit consisting of a Von Dutch trucker cap, a wallet chain and a Kappa tracksuit. A stranger laughed at me and then threw an apple core at my head. So what’s on trend and what’s yesterday’s news? What’s worn ironically and what’s plain street attire? Is a coffee or a kale smoothie the preferred beverage for youngens nowadays? Keeping #relevant is a very stressful job.
If anything, trends seem to be amplified and accelerated within the realm of dance music. With every bedroom producer shooting for the stars via SoundCloud, the turnover rate of artists and sounds is nothing short of rapid. We’ve seen the rise and fall of America’s maximalist interpretation of dubstep, which was reliant on bass drops that sound like robot diarrhoea. We’ve also seen more specific styles steal the spotlight for what seems like a minute, including moombahton and other genres named after discarded Lion King characters.
Throughout this sonic whirlwind, some dance artists have managed to stay relevant not by jumping on board trends, but by taking the rather unusual route of producing quality music. Flight Facilities are one of those artists. The production duo have done the rounds on Australia’s club and festival circuit more times than we can count, while their ingenious mixes have rewritten the rule book in a confident, blazing manner. Also, they once opened a set with Bomfunk MC’s ‘Freestyler’, so they deserve a standing ovation from now until the end of eternity.
Currently on the verge of releasing their debut album ‘Down To Earth,’ Flight Facilities partnered up with Samsung for a private show in Melbourne’s southern suburb of Brighton. Being a Sydneysider, my trips to Melbourne usually consist of begging for change outside Crown Casino and wondering why a ‘cat cafe’ exists.
Entering Melbourne’s lush Southside, we cruised past beachside mansions of Puff Daddy proportions before pulling up at a neat space adorned with velvet rope and carpet. Velvet is a very essential material. The first room was littered with Samsung’s Multiroom speakers pumping Flight Facilities’ catalogue, while a warehouse at the rear would later house the gig. Being a fiery anti-lockout campaigner from Sydney, the mere mention of the word ‘warehouse’ obviously sent me into an uncontrollable celebration gabber.
Flight Facilities took the decks in a shirt and tie combo in the late afternoon, keeping with their tradition of looking dapper around the clock. From there, they delivered a set that built upon the eclecticism and diversity that has seen their performances become essential viewing. Most notable was their nod to fellow local artists – Tame Impala, The Preatures and even Kylie Minogue’s underrated sultry jam ‘Slow’ got a whirl on the decks, because who doesn’t love Kylie?
Kelis and Andre 3000’s ‘Millionaire’ got a warm reception from the crowd, while it also sent us into a brief Splendour In The Grass reminiscing session (#TEARSOFJOY #NOSTALGIA). Of course, this was all jammed in between Flight Facilities’ own material, including the courageous new single ‘Two Bodies’ and the whistling nonchalance of ‘Stand Still’. Their favoured summer anthems ‘With You’ and ‘Foreign Language’ got the vibes alive and kicking, while the moody ‘Clair de Lune’ cast a pensive blanket over the crowd.
The duo finished with Disclosure’s ‘Latch’, an appropriate house anthem that’s undoubtedly going to get a few more spins with the warmer weather. All in all, this was a worthy Sunday session that’s just one notch in Flight Facilities’ exciting immediate future. With an album and world tour on the horizon, they jokingly told us that no matter the reception, “we suppose it can’t be any worse”. They also agreed with my suggestion to make some customised Flight Facilities bathrobes, so clearly things are coming up Milhouse for the two.
After the gig, we went back to the hotel and ordered a chorizo linguine via room service. Many thanks for Brighton Savoy for accommodating us. We made the most of it: