2006 must seem at least slightly longer than 2005 to the ensemble cast of Kunek, a Stillwater, OK-based six-piece who create epic, atmospheric, rock songs that fans of Radiohead, Sigur Ros, Elbow and maybe even Pink Floyd would enjoy. But that's what happens when you're a young indie rock band who have been playing together for two years and your debut album's release date gets pushed back. That album, Flight Of The Flynns, was initially slated for release on June 20, but it won't actually see the light of day until September 12. The fact that promo copies of the album were sent out according to the initial release date didn't help ease the stress levels either I'm assuming.
Kunek didn't let it worry them though. They played some regional dates throughout June and July, then wrapped up August with an East Cost tour that included three shows in and around New York City. Those NYC dates were well attended (The Tripwire was present at two of the three to witness the magic), and they reminded everyone (hopefully) that Flight Of The Flynns was finally ready for the masses.
Thankfully, this album is good enough to withstand a little manufacturing hick-up (or whatever caused the release date shift) with ease. Expansive and lush, thoughtful and dramatic, this meticulously conceived work of art clocks in at just under an hour.
The band's bio makes it clear that they want everyone to understand that each member of the group is a critical piece of the overall puzzle. This truth becomes apparent while listening Flight Of The Flynns. Its thick, textured sound is spattered with perfectly placed cello and violin, twinkling keys and soft, acoustic guitar strumming. Swirling electronic elements find their way into the mix, as do expertly placed drum lines and understated bass, all coming together to create something truly beautiful and expressive.
Each track flows into the next with ease, solidifying that Flight Of The Flynns is meant to be enjoyed as an entire album. Track one, "We Have Become," ends with a noise-filled whine that fades perfectly into the first line of track two, "Sign Of Life," a clear stand out track on this album. The conclusion of "A Sign Of Life" gives way to the soft acoustic strumming intro on track three, "Bright Eyes," and so on, through all thirteen tracks.
This album is perfect for the winter months that lay ahead. It's brooding and cold, but can also be warm and inviting. It portrays isolation and cynicism, but also hope and compassion. It will get you through both those long winter weekends at home nestled up by the fire and the even longer, arduous weekday trek to work through the streets of whichever dirty, dismal, snow covered city you call home. This one is a must have.
"A Sign Of Life" MP3