Orlando’s Flashlights are yet another band rampantly gaining comparisons to ‘90s alt rockers. Built to Spill, Neutral Milk Hotel, Sebadoh all seem to be in the mix of critical characterizations. However, with so many bands actively admitting that the ‘90s are, indeed, their one true love, in a recent chat with Flashlights bassist Will Powell, he tells me that the band’s influences are a bit more diverse than simply that.
“I mean, I really like Superchunk, definitely, but some of these bands we get compared to aren’t bands we necessarily were big fangs of. We get compared to Archers of Loaf a lot and I don’t think we’re really like that. In terms of the ‘90s, I really like My Bloody Valentine and Modest Mouse. I guess we’re all kind of ‘90s kids and we’re all into things like video games and ‘90s movies, but we’re also into the classics. We’re all really into ‘70s and we love The Beatles and Prince is a big influence.”
This June saw the release of Flashlights’ sophomore album, Bummer Summer. The album boasts bittersweet, sunshiny power pop whose angst is as infectious as its rhythm section. And even on the slower numbers there’s a quirky charm that shines through above all else. I ask Will about how the experience of recording Summer Bummer compares to their debut, I’m Not Alone, and he explains that it was like night and day: “It was definitely a different experience. We were in a nice studio with Scott Hutchison and Andy Monaghan [of Frightened Rabbit] producing. With the producers, it was like we had a different additional voice on the record and it just seemed more polished, in general.” Flashlights are currently on tour with Total Slacker and PAWS and will be playing Boot & Saddle this Saturday, September 6th.