THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA at John Dee (Oslo, Norway)
Sunday, November 11, 2018
by Jorge Patacas
For those who are not yet familiar with this band, it is worth mentioning that it is a side project of Björn “Speed” Strid and David Andersson (vocalist and guitarist of Soilwork, respectively), who while touring with their main band in 2007, they decided to start a group oriented to a completely different sound than what we are used to hear from them. This was the beginning of this journey, and then Sharlee D’Angelo (Arch Enemy / Mercyful Fate) on bass, Richard Larsson on keyboards and Jonas Källsbäck on drums joined the crew. Two years after the release of their debut album “Internal Affairs” (2012), the percussionist and guitarist Sebastian Forslund joined, and more recently, the choir singers Anna-Mia Bonde and Anna Brygård, better known as the “Airline” Annas followed the same path. In 2017 the band released their third studio album entitled “Amber Galactic” via Nuclear Blast getting a very good reception, then in 2018 they managed to release “Sometimes The World Is Not Enough”, their fourth album, for which they decided to go on a more extended promotional tour for the first time, which has landed only in European countries for now, being Norway one of the destinations. RISE! was able to attend the show.
On a personal note, this was the first time I was able to see them live and I had lots of expectations and curiosity to see how they carry out their performance. The show started punctually at 8:30 p.m. after the venue John Dee (established in 1997 with capacity for 400 people) opened the doors an hour and a half before. With a very enthusiastic audience, the musicians appeared on stage, each of them with a particular look which transported us back in time to the late 70’s and early 80’s classic pop and rock bands. They were wearing suits and sunglasses that remind us of bands like Electric Light Orchestra and even memories of Survivor came up to mind while seeing Björn that night, since he wears a beret very similar to that used by the vocalist Dave Bickler, like other bands of the time. The choir singers were dressed in stewardesses costumes and the backdrop with the logo of the band was behind them, so everything was ready for the band to start their set with “Sometimes The World Is not Enough” and “Living For The Nighttime”.
The aesthetic description matches perfectly with what they offer live, a show that recalls a brilliant era of music, but carried to the present day, showing that these sounds are really timeless. The Night Flight Orchestra does not try to evoke a particular band or sound, but manages to capture all their influences to create their own identity. Inspired by classic bands from the periods mentioned as Deep Purple, Toto, ABBA, Styx, Kool & The Gang and Survivor, to name a few, it is a pleasure to hear fresh sounds in this era, a band with great songwriting, where each of the members stands out differently during the show. The guitarist and mastermind behind each composition, David Andersson, always quiet and shy on stage, stands out with the guitar solos the songs require. It’s strange to see Björn “Speed” Strid in a non-metal band, however it’s here where his clean voice stands out more than ever; his skills as a vocalist are really impressive, even more considering that he is self-taught, as he told us in the exclusive interview we conducted with him some hours before the show. It is worth mentioning that Sharlee D’Angelo couldn’t be on stage this time due to his commitments with Arch Enemy, who were touring South America, being superbly replaced by Rasmus Ehrnborn, who also has a great presence on stage and was at the height of the circumstances, taking into account that the bass is an essential instrument in a band that evokes these mentioned periods of the history of music.
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