Going Underground: Flatlands
Deputy Print Editor Richard Ainslie recommends a listen to student band Flatlands.
One of the incredible things about adolescence is the pace of change. Looking back on yourself even six months ago can feel bemusing at best and repulsive at worst. How were you even like that? Why did you think that a The Smiths poster, roll-up cigarettes, and a copy of the communist manifesto would make you interesting? Case and point: Flatlands. Abingdon School’s (my school’s) best student band. They defeated a grand total of zero other student bands on the journey to earn their crown, a journey that took them via three dingy Oxford pubs, one house party that I can best describe as ‘shit’, and a single day spent atop Abingdon School’s student meme page. Then came their collapse, as inter-band tension and disillusionment with indie music set in like black mold. Such a meteoric rise to mediocrity earned them a few thousand Spotify plays. That’s not bad considering their most popular song is about failing a driving test.
Look up student bands in the dictionary and you may well find a picture of Flatlands.
Why should you listen to them? Look up student bands in the dictionary and you may well find a picture of Flatlands. They represent everything that is right, and wrong, with amateur music. Half-baked lyrics, guitar riffs that couldn’t tie their own shoelaces, and a creepy, A-Level earnestness that makes them sound like a puppy who’s just been kicked. Bands like Flatlands are where music is born, nurtured, and then sent to an orphanage. And that’s what’s so beautiful about them! Listening to a band like Flatlands is a lot like fostering a child – if it grows up to be an Olympic athlete you keep hold of it and boast to your friends, if not then you send it back to the foster home. Flatlands are the Tracy Beaker of Spotify, still pissed off that nobody came to sign them. Listen to them and I promise you an unflinching glimpse into the hormone swilled, sex crazed brains of four teenagers high on Arctic Monkeys, Friday night kisses and poor-quality Oxford weed. It’s Lynx Africa in four minutes. If you don’t like it, send it back.