Low Level Flight
Most musicians debase their art. Realizing it or not, they forget that the essence of great
music stems from being honest to one person: themselves. Bastardizing their sound in an
effort to appeal, garner attention of fit in, they demean the one thing that defines them.
Toronto-based quartet Low Level Flight (LLF) aren't about to pander to anyone. With
eyes solidly set on reaching their destiny through sincerity and fortitude, they've seen
what's behind the facade. And wisely turned their backs.
Since 2006, this band of hook-laden independent rockers have been carving a fresh path
thanks to a common vision, an inimitable sound and some fiendishly fetching music. It's
an accomplishment highlighted by their latest work, sophomore opus Through These
Walls (Brave Rekords).
Initially conceived by Malcolm as a means of moving beyond the solo material and world
of facetious pop he had grown distasteful of, LLF's debut effort Urgency (2007) found
him pairing up with like-minded visionaries in Carter, Rooke, Merenick and original
bassist Shaun Noronha. Eventually bringing Emeny into the fold after Noronha moved on
to a quiet family life, Low Level Flight was primed for the melodic fight.
“I wanted something that sat better with me,” Malcolm notes about his venture into a
more collaborative medium. “We're working together; feeding off of one another. We
have sincerity, be it with messages in our lyrics, the images we use to represent ourselves
or the sounds we deliver. Every bit of this band is real.”
A bountifully enticing affair, Urgency saw Low Level Flight amalgamate primary
influences such as the lilting, atmospheric flare of Interpol and Muse's almost symphonic
indie rock delivery into an entirely unique overture. Ravenously embraced, the album
garnered no less than three Top 10 videos and two Top 40 singles whilst bringing their
music across the United States, Canada and even an extensive tour of India.
Signing on with the country's revered Time Music, in conjunction with Bombay Rock
Association and via sponsors including Rolling Stone India, Jim Beam, Hard Rock Cafe
and the Canadian government, LLF brought their peerless sound to the likes of Mumbai,
Pune, Bangalore and Delhi, an experience Malcolm and crew revel in.
“It was incredible,” he exults. “Seeing how a country so different from your own can
be so excited for the music you've created is amazing. During our tour of India, we also
saw our first single/video hit Number One on MTV, while breaking attendance records at
multiple Hard Rock Cafe venues was a shock.”
Still, as Urgency was composed by Malcolm almost entirely before the band's lineup
was solidified, the quintet was clearly keen to pursue a more collective—and therefore
The results of those efforts are immediately evident on Through These Walls, a virulent
display of cohesiveness, stability, resounding rhythms and anthemic prowess. Penned in
their rehearsal hall over the course of two years, the band worked diligently at ensuring
their innate ability to commingle brawny ability with captivating harmonies and melodies
isn't just represented on Through These Walls. It's epitomized.
“Writing comes for us rather quickly because we all bring our own sound to the table
and it's incredibly complimentary,” Malcolm notes sincerely. “Urgency was great but
I felt there could have been a more pointed direction. Some songs were heavy, some
were melodic and others were dance rock. It's tricky but it did offer us cool and unique
stance. Through These Walls has a more persevering sound because its influences are
streamlining through the members of the band.”
“It's not like we have hard feelings about our past but this is a new band,” beams
Merenick, confident about LLF's growing fortitude. “We've evolved into this fresh sound
that we're proud of. The last album was great but Through These Walls is new in so
many ways. It's definitely a new chapter in the band. We've evolved for the better. From
the continuous sound—like a band, not professionally-written pop/rock—through to the
actual performances on record, the feeling is organic; genuine.”
Tapping the expertise of revered producer Gus Van Go (The Still, Priestess, The Trews)
in order to document Through These Walls ensured LLF's purest vision was captured
only after it was nurtured and provoked. Utilizing his wealth of experience and a devout
interest in creating the best possible songs, Van Go brought out unheralded creativity
from the band while also offering unique perspectives on overall approach.
At that, Through These Walls is striking onslaught of honed vision, unadulterated
precision and—most importantly—guileless relation. Melding personal experience with
insightful learnings, everything from the occasional interpersonal, philosophical musing
to hard sagas are relayed on this divinely direct affair. Refusing to rest on the laurels of
typicality, tracks including cold war-influenced “Quiet Rage” and “Exit” (documenting
how starving countries have been eschewed/ignored by more powerful nations) ensure
Through These Walls is impacting, powerful and compelling.
“We're not happy-go-lucky songwriters,” Malcolm maintains. “We're not gonna lie to
you with, 'baby baby' songs. People may try to put things out of sight and mind but we
won't let you get away with it. The title track is about a written by an inmate on Death
Row for that matter. It's unnerving but it's real life.”
Fundamentally, while Urgency established Low Level Flight, thanks to allied—and
vested—interest, Through These Walls exudes deeper passion and cemented ingenuity;
a tighter unit and greater drive live. It proclaims LLF as an enduring, dedicated
band thriving from their musical lifeblood. Moreover, it affirms their dominance,
independence and stability via fortitude, dedication and relentlessly fetching tunes.
“As much as we like to survive—eat and pay rent—there's nothing like seeing someone
connect with your music live,” Malcolm concludes. “That's what makes it all worthwhile.
Respect is like a massive boulder you have gain parts of. We're chipping away at it,
gaining more and more with our performances and songwriting. Through These Walls is
what's gonna give us our biggest piece of that rock.”