Adventure Before Dementia
Fate has intervened once again to bring three unlikely musical allies together. The talents of worldly trio Malaysian-born Pana, Hong Kong-born Mark Szeto and Atlanta's Chris Fields have found a creative focus in the sound of Newcastle. Vocalist and guitarist Pana, bassist Mark and drummer Chris are musical journeymen. Each has embarked on their own path, exploring a diverse range of musical styles from the world over. Having individually forged successful careers, the Low Flying Hippies have harnessed their unique expertise to craft songs about life, the universe and your local pub, delivered with a distinctly Newcastle rock sound. The musical collaboration between Mark and Pana began in 1998 when they met at university. The two enjoyed an instant musical rapport but pursued other creative avenues. In between surfing and practising Tai Chi, Pana became a stalwart in the unforgiving Newcastle music scene, writing and performing in bands such as Alterstate and Flat Earth Society, whilst Mark pursued his love of World music, enjoying ARIA Award success with his former outfit Monsieur Camembert. Pana and Mark decided to work together again in 2008 and Low Flying Hippies was born. The son of an Air Force fighter pilot, Pana named the band in deference to the fighter jocks he met while his father was stationed in California - men who were trained for combat but had an amazing belief in life and beauty - Light and Dark. The two old mates soon found Chris, a drummer whose wide ranging experience in Latin percussion and training in classical tabla made him the perfect choice to complete the Low Flying Hippies sound. The fact that Chris' brother is also a fighter pilot meant that the Universe had spoken! Adventure Before Dementia is Low Flying Hippies' self-produced 10-track debut album. Pana's songs and lyrics explore the notion of spirituality in a working class town. He looks for the beauty in everyday life. The trio weave together their various musical tastes and expertise to make an album that still just rocks. The band navigates easily from the kick-down-the-door single Picket Fences to the jazzy Hey Soul to the Motown-grooved Sparks of Divine. Low Flying Hippies' music may be described as Velvet Underground meets Tea Party with a hint of late Beatles.