The Rite Flyers
The Rite Flyers (Paisley Pop)
Reviewed by Christopher Gray, Fri., Feb. 6, 2004
The Rite Flyers(Paisley Pop) Anyone reduced to crying in his PBR over Guided by Voices' recent cancellation would do well to seek out the Rite Flyers the next time they take the stage at a local pub. Like Bob Pollard's Ohio-based song combine, Austin's Flyers practice several styles all loosely orbiting the same power-pop nucleus: snappy electric rockers, plaintive acoustic odes, fuzz-clouded squalls, songs that don't even break the one-minute mark. Though they've since expanded to a full band, The Rite Flyers is the work of Steve Collier and John Clayton, whose combined résumés include long-gone local favorites like Doctor's Mob, Ballonatic, and the Sidehackers. Throw in Spoon drummer Jim Eno brightening the corners as producer (and helping out on drums now and again), and the disc positively vibrates with the sort of chipper melodic energy that suggests the duo could crank out a hummable tune or three before their second cup of morning coffee. As a matter of fact, a few tracks, chiefly the 53-second psychedelic wash "The Cricket Invasion," sound a little too tossed-off, but on a 16-song disc, that's bound to happen sooner or later. Besides, enough do hit the mark handclap-inflected "Ex-Wife Birthday Card," wittily nursery-rhyme-like "Jill Stood Still," ironically upbeat "It Makes No Difference," Uncle Tupeloish "Liars' Club Cathedral" that as a whole, The Rite Flyers radiates a most pleasant buzz. Best be looking over your shoulder, Bob.