Five Fantastic Flying Nun-Inspired Bands

Last week, influential indie-rock label Captured Tracks announced a massive reissue campaign of records from the Flying Nun catalog, itself one of the most influential indie-rock labels of all-time. Through acts such as the Clean, Tall Dwarfs, the Chills, and the Verlaines, the New Zealand label inspired an entire generation of underground musicians, some as legendary as Stephen Malkmus, Jeff Mangum and Jay Reatard. While Captured Tracks prepares for a double-LP compilation from Toy Love (featuring Chris Knox, who enjoyed a fruitful solo career after the dissolution of Tall Dwarfs), today we salute five top-of-the-line contemporary indie bands bringing the influence of Flying Nun well into the 21st Century.

1. Crystal Stilts

As one of Brooklyn’s premier psych-pop bands, Crystal Stilts had been singing the praises of Flying Nun since the beginning of their career, back when their contemporaries were merely dusting off their C-86 cassettes. After forming in 2005 and finally capturing national attention three years later with their self-titled demo collection and debut album Alight of Night (Slumberland), their wide-eyed, major-key clangor was so undeniable even Flying Nun stalwarts the Clean brought them along on tour. It’s easy to see why: Even with lead singer Brad Hargett’s morose baritone — probably most suited for Factory than any other label you can immediately reference — the Stilts are lush and expansive, easily sculpting a widescreen version of the kind of music Flying Nun brought to the world.

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