The Vault: The Flashing Lights Brightens Up The Room

May 17th, 2007 // 15 Comments

flashinglights.jpgFor some reason, we didn’t catch the Flashing Lights’ Where The Change Is when it was released in 2000, though we’re guessing that the group’s home country (Canada) and sound (guitar-centric power-pop) garnered it plenty of Sloan comparisons. Apparently, we weren’t the only ones who missed out, as the Lights appears to have disbanded a few years after the album’s release, and Change is now available at Amazon for about $4–a good deal, especially when you consider that it works out to to an amazing forty-cents-per-sing-along-chorus cost:

The Flashing Lights – Where The Change Is [MP3, link expired]
The Flashing Lights – Highschool [MP3, link expired]


  1. Marlow

    Before this band, Matt Murphy was in the Super Friendz, one of the other great 90s Halifax bands.

  2. JohnDC

    This record is wonderful. You’ve been digging through the stacks of CDs in my bedroom again.

  3. Thierry

    Matt Murphy is NOT related to Sloan’s Chris Murphy, but the Flashing Lights’ debut is indeed a wonderful record (and their follow up, Sweet Release, is just that). The worst festival programming I ever saw was when they held this modern rock fest in Ottawa and scheduled the Flashing Lights on a side stage AT THE SAME TIME as Sloan’s headlining set on the main stage. Which meant that I, along with the 5 other people there, really enjoyed an intimate show by the Flashing Lights.

  4. tankboy

    When I first heard these guys back them I almost thought is was a Sloan side-project under a pseudonym!

  5. michaelpop

    Such a great record I actually own it twice: I have the original Canadian version and also the US release (with bonus trax) on Spin Art.

    My life was recently made complete when I finally tracked down their second LP “Sweet Release”. It’s just as good, but a lot more nuanced and stylistically varied. “Where The Change Is” is just balls-out jubilant and tons of fun. A perfect summertime soundtrack.

  6. greeneyed

    A post about the Flashing Lights without ‘Elevature’? I think some CanCon laws have been broken ;)

  7. Chazz Peppin

    Another connection is that Chris Murphy occasionally played drums in The Super Friendz, and they were on Sloan’s Murderecords. Plus, like many a Halifax band, The Flashing Lights were predisposed to get the audience to chant their name at gigs.

  8. rinjonjori

    I read that sweet release isn’t quite like Where the Change is? (AMG) Is that true?

  9. DK10

    There are so many phenomenal things to point out about the Flashing Lights, but chief among them, perhaps, is the stellar Gavin Dianda, their cape-wearing, tambourine-playing keyboardist. I feel incredibly lucky to have seen them at what turned out to be their last show, in Chicago in 2003 (I think), opening for the New Pornographers.

    Another Sloan connection: Flashing Lights bassist Henri Sangalang played in the proto-Sloan outfit, Kearney Lake Rd., along with Chris Murphy and Jay Ferguson.

    (A friend and I used to play “Six Degrees of Mike Belitsky,” wherein we would draw connections between various CanRock superstars and the prolific Mike Belitsky, now of the Sadies. I am a bit rusty these days, but all this exciting Flashing Lights talk is bringing it back.)

  10. Thierry

    @DK10: If you include the Rick White connection through The Unintended, you can make it full circle all the way to Halifax!

  11. Thierry

    @Thierry: Or Moncton, sorry. Still Nova Scotia.

  12. BenP

    i bought this record at a borders in 2000 thinking it was flaming lips b/c i was hungry for music, don’t read well and enjoy paying in excess of $15 for cds. But it worked out well. Great record.

  13. Thierry

    @Thierry: Man, I should never post when I’m working on something else. Moncton, NEW BRUNSWICK. Dammit. Still on the East Coast.

  14. CaptainPeacockSuit

    Matt Murphy is currently holed up in a secret desert location with Guy Terrifico…watch out for burning caskets.

  15. Laurent Fignewton

    Back a long time ago, when I managed a small mom-n-pop record store I got this as a promo and fell in love with the first spin. I ordered it in, spun the hell out of it and actually sold a few.

    I wish I got a chance to see ‘em, but that’s life.

    Anytime I come upon this album in the bargain bins across the nation, I make sure to pick it up so that I can gift it to my friends unaware of how good this disc is.

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