25th March 2022
Skylights have been making waves of late, especially locally. But then, the question of local success is, to what extent can it translate regionally, nationally, and beyond? Recently, there has been significant coverage of the band playing a brace of major shows (two due to such high demand for the first) at a large-capacity venue – in a village on the edge of York. Now, I applaud their DIY ethic, the fact they’ve sorted these Easter weekend shows themselves and sold them without press or PR or label backing. Recent years and moths have really shown just how far bands can go independently, with Benefits in particular really owning independence to the point that they’re selling out bigger venues nationally with no backing beyond word of mouth and Steve Albini.
Of course, there’s always an element of luck, but outside of the world of manufactured success, it’s largely down to whether or not what you’re selling has demand, and in Benefits’ case, the demand is there by the spadeful.
Skylights may not be as unique as Benefits, but they’re carving their own niche, and on the evidence of the first single from their debut album, they’ve clearly got game.
‘Outlaw’ packs that mid 80s post-punk Leeds sound with heavy hints of The Rose of Avalanche and Salvation, with a big dose of The Cult thrown into the mix. ‘Outlaw’ isn’t exactly a ‘She Sellls Sanctuary’ life, but the guitar break definitely takes some cues from the Bradford band’s major smash. If Editors and Interpol and White Lies spearheaded a new wave revival around the turn of the millennium, the latest crop of revivalist acts definitely offer something different.
The production balances pomp and haziness, the defining factors that allude to the ‘big’ sound of the 80s; it’s ultimately an amalgamation of goth, indie, and arena-rock, and some thirty-five plus years on, it’s a sound that seems to be coming back in vogue. Skylights have the sound absolutely nailed, and better still, ‘Outlaw’ says they’ve got the songs to back it. The future is looking bright for Skylights.