For anyone already familiar with West Yorkshire’s Late Night Legacy, their new single “Sunny When You’re Gone” might come as something of a surprise. Indeed, where previous singles such as ‘Crystal Blue’ or last year’s ‘Paddy’ are prime examples of the weighty and robust rock aesthetic on which Late Night Legacy have made their name, their latest offering is something richer, grander, and altogether more ambitious.
And well it might be. Described by the band as “a chilled Pop-Rock track to transcend into another time”, “Sunny When You’re Gone” is both bold in its ambition, yet blissful in its delivery; a rousing and optimistic anthem that distances itself from its predecessors thanks to its combination of understated keys, clean guitars and vocal harmonies, all of which merge together to create a single that suggests this is Late Night Legacy, but not as we’ve seen them before.
Recorded over the UK’s first lockdown, at a time when feelings of escaping both physically and metaphorically were almost universal, it makes sense that “Sunny When You’re Gone” should harbour such feelings of wide-open optimism – it’s catharsis in its purest sense, for both band and listener alike.
Of course, it wouldn’t be Late Night Legacy without subverting expectations at least a little (and I’m not talking about the track’s bridge which, rapped by frontman Ryan Kitto, works surprisingly well). Though beginning as an innocuously stereotypical love story, “Sunny…” soon lives up to its title, exploring the realisation that sometimes, things really are just better when someone isn’t in your life anymore.
Of course, exhibiting a softer side of Late Night Legacy might well earn them some criticism from belligerent fans of their heavier material, but be that as it may, the fact remains that “Sunny When You’re Gone” is the sound of a band taking the next steps in their career.