Flashing Red Lights - "All Our Borders Are Crumbling"
May 8, 2009
I met up with Mack on a rather sunny Friday afternoon at the practice space in North Hollywood that he shares with another local indie act, Casxio. Luckily, it was early enough in the day that no other bands in the building were being too loud (around here, between the astronomical rent, or not wanting to live at your parents' house, or the impossibility of getting paid to play, everyone's got a day job). This was fortunate because it was going to be just him and his acoustic guitar.
Slevin's been playing and recording his own songs under the moniker Flashing Red Lights for a few years now, while continuing to play guitar for other acts (recently The Ghost Kings and Valentino). On album and live, he's got a full range of instrumentation, but the songs are rooted in acoustic, traditional singer-sonwriter compositions.
If you expect from his songs a quiet, serious, reserved persona, you're way off the mark. However, as soon as he counts to four and his fingers pick that first note, there's a switch. All smiles and joviality are instantly overtaken by the immediacy of intricate guitar and sweeping lyricism that's almost Dylan-esque in its imagery that's somehow able to weave love, loss, doubt, hope, political, social and personal reflections into every song.
These are the types of songs I love to see stripped down to just a singer and their guitar, where the words and delivery are everything (okay, good guitar helps). We didn't really have a plan going in, he just sat down and started playing. And when he was done with the first song, he played another, and then another, until he'd played five songs from his seemingly bottomless vault of catchy, poignant tunes.
Find out more about Flashing Red Lights @ myspace.com/flashingredlights
Camera: Elliot Glass
Sound: Elliot Glass
All Rights Reserved. Member of Ocean Studios.