Veterans in the indie electronic world, Flight Facilities’ return was everything you wanted and more, but not necessarily what you may have been expecting.
Obviously, they didn’t disappoint. Latest single ‘Arty Boy’ is a shot of wavy yet charming instrumentals intertwining with soft but hypnotic vocals provided by honorary member, Emma Louise. Gentle and caressing, the song soars with small grooves that tickle and wiggle. It strokes with a RnB tinged hook , ‘all I wanna know is what you think about me, arty boy.’
A small but noticeable side step into a new direction moves from the neon fluorescence of previous releases to the twinkling fairy-light draped track. Perhaps they’ve become the personification, deciding that the said ‘arty boy’ is “definitely the indie kid at the party, who in all honesty, is likely too cool to be there.” Flight Facilities consider, “At least he probably thinks he is.”
Yet, the song wasn’t strictly their own at first. Originally titled ‘Boy In The Zoo’ and belonging to Emma herself for her solo album, Supercry, the duo made it a little too ‘Flight Facilities’, and got it for keeps. “It’s sat in the vault for a long time now.” They say, having finished it back in 2015. But now is as good as time as ever to let it loose on the dance-floor. Perhaps the indie bottom floor on a Tuesday.
Describing the music industries as “an ever changing beast,” the duo acknowledge that “streaming services are taking over, and the album is not always the goal. If anything it’s just enhanced some uncertainties, but for the best.” Ever the optimists, “It’s an exciting time to be innovative about the business side of music. Personally we’ve learned that not touring so much is really helpful for making new music. We’ve definitely put that one into practice.”
Recognising the times of change, Flight Facilities relish in the control that they can have, and in particular the environment that listeners “can endure the song in its entirety”. The ‘Arty Boy’ music video is a nostalgic materpiece. Made by German collective Jünglinge, it has an avant-garde heart and takes a leaf out of the French New Wave’s anti-rule book as pretty much a mini-documentary about an Irani-German couple who know Arnold Schwarzenegger and run a bodybuilding bath house, and have quite a few pool parties.
“The idea came from the team who made it over in Munich. They pitched the idea to us, along with the fact that it held a lot of truth in its backstory. The owner of the gym/bathhouse really did have an old friendship with Arnold Schwarzenegger. We thought that backstory, and the rest of the video idea was so great, all we had to do was say yes.”
Running with an 80s vibe, from the shoulder pads to the perms, there’s something homely about the video – all warm colours and big smiles.
“Quite often we go through a mountain of ideas before settling on one, but we loved this one from the start. We liked the thought of the video being a little bit weird, and confronting.”
Ditching the party scene that the song spells out was an easy decision, and not just because of the nightmarish, yet probably hilarious logistics of putting that together with the duo. “…now we’ve got a special story that becomes a part of our own” they say, “a music video always adds something to a song.”
The video for ‘Arty Boy’ is special and one-of-a-kind. Complete with the stunning visuals, that you’ll definitely remember, it certifies the song as being as infinite and loved as it’s archive. Here’s hoping the couple get themselves a full-length Netflix documentary.
Words by Tanyel Gumushan