Why Everyone Should Take Off! with the Flying Hounds: A Review

by Adelaide Sandvold ’18

Based out of Chicago and comprised of three members, two of whom are Kenyon students (Tom Cox ’17 and Ned Vogel ’15), the Flying Hounds prove they are much more than just another college band. Their debut album Take Off! with the Flying Hounds showcases gorgeous chord progressions and lyrics and gives listeners a clear idea of the Flying Hounds’ identity as a band. The album is cohesive but by no means stagnant—each song offers a different look at the elements that seem to comprise the inspiration behind the Flying Hounds.

From the moment it begins, Take Off! with the Flying Hounds presents an explosion of beautifully sneering surf-rock guitars and soulful vocals. These two elements stay present throughout the album yet evolve and adapt in order to fit the tone of each track. For instance on “Bottle Kids,” the guitar becomes more plucky and distinct, while a whinier, more punk-like vocal technique is employed.

“Tennessee Woman” is neo-Springsteen-esque in its spirit and sound as it drives forth with its full-bodied production values. “Ghost” seems to echo Beach House with its dreamy and lilting guitars before building into a pounding and pleading rock anthem. “Stinger” is this album’s best example of garage rock with its lo-fi vocals, harsh drums, and fittingly stinging guitars.

The album concludes with the peaceful “Standing Between Two Trees.” It’s cerebral and gentle, yet doesn’t fall short to the power and intensity demonstrated in the first 10 tracks. The guitar is thoroughly captivating, twisting around the main melody in order to show off its own. This song is the listener’s chance to relax and react to the album with a smile on his/her face, and when juxtaposed with the opening track “Amy Lee,” it creates an excellent balance.

Take Off! is modern, but an homage to the past, as well as unique, creative, and clearly very well conceptualized and executed. It is worth a listen … and then many more after that.

Take Off! with the Flying Hounds is available for streaming and purchase at theflyinghounds.bandcamp.com.