are lucky they made a name switch, from the original band moniker Fear of Flying, back in 2007; not only did the change mark an evolution in their music, but made it much easier to justify crossing the Atlantic via airplane for sold-out tours, like they did this spring.
No surprise, then, that the British band opted to put together a flight-inspired mixtape for us. As drummer Jack Lawrence-Brown explains, “This mixtape is comprised of tracks which I like to l isten to during all the long haul flying White Lies do at the moment. Some of the songs just sound better at 38,000 feet.” Fear of flying, indeed.
Blonde Redhead – “My Impure Hair”
This song has such a weird quality to it. It glides along on ghostly indecipherable vocals and very delicate guitars, it sounds otherworldly. It has a really relaxing and comforting quality to it, which makes looking out of the window and seeing very little at all feel like a lot fun rather than a seven hour bore.Spiritualized – “Ladies and Gentlemen We are Floating in Space”
I bought this song/album on iTunes in an airport before a long flight, so the first time I heard it was on an evening flight going back home to London, with the sun setting out my window and three seats to myself due to some miracle of chance. Since then I've never really wanted to listen to it except on planes, and it definitely always sounds better further from the ground.Talking Heads – “This Must Be the Place (Naïve Melody)”
This song sounds good wherever you hear it, but I love the way it kind of just floats along on it's own steam, not really interested in anything else that’s going on. That's the best way to approach plane journeys.
Secret Machines – “First Wave Intact”
Any song that makes nine minutes shoot by in the blink of an eye, and makes you wanna start it all over again, is fine by me. This is one of my favorite songs ever, and there is rarely a day that passes where I don't listen to it.School of Seven Bells – “Half Asleep”
This is amazing dream pop, featuring Ben Curtis, previously of the aformentioned Secret Machines. Beautiful melodies and loads of reverb drenched noise puts me in that perfect drowzy plane sleep mode, pretending you're unconscious when they bring round the tray microwaved meal hell so you don’t have to choose.
Belle and Sebastian – “The Boy With the Arab Strap”
Twee music helps keep me happy and calm in stressful situations. This song (and album) recently helped me overcome a journey sat next to very fat man who smelt truly of ass.The Pains of Being Pure at Heart – “This Love Is Fucking Right”
Okay, so I haven't ever listened to this on a plane, but I only bought it a week ago. When I do eventually get the pleasure to do so, I imagine it's going to be a truly great few minutes of joyous fuzzy pop. Certainly better than watching another movie with Vince Vaughn or Jennifer Aniston (or both - The Break-Up
) in it, which is usually what you get unless you're a big deal and can afford Virgin Atlantic.
Asobi Seksu – “Pink Cloud Tracing Paper”
A song that references clouds in the title?! On a plane?! You bet.Doves – “There Goes the Fear”
This song sounds like a journey. Probably more of a train journey than a plane journey, but I love it either way. Talking of Journeys...Journey – “Don’t Stop Believing”
Nah, only joking.Japan – "The Art of Parties"
When traveling East, this track gets me in a Tokyo frame of mind. Lots of weird things going on at the same time.Mercury Rev – “Holes”
This is maybe my ultimate flying song. It feels like it was written on a plane. Completely effortless and totally epic.Talk Talk – Spirit of Eden LP
This album is only six (long) tracks, and they all kind of run together like one big song, so I think I can count [it] as one track. I think that's how it should be approached. This album is super minimal but very intricate, and you need time and peace and quiet to really enjoy it, so plane journeys (preferably at night) are ideal.
REBECCA WILLA DAVIS