The first single to be taken from the Flowers’ album Do What You Want To, It’s What You Should Do is “Joanna”, a song about someone suffering from a depression so deep that has become part of their identity. “Joanna” was the second song recorded in their sessions with producer Bernard Butler but the first where everything just clicked and the band knew they had a working creative relationship. “He made it sound full of vitality and excitement”, says Rachel, Flowers’ lead singer. “We were thrilled with the results and couldn’t wait to get back and record the rest of the album with him.”
Flowers are Sam Ayres (Guitar/Synths), Rachel Kenedy (Vocals/Bass/Synths) and Jordan Hockley (Drums), brought together by Sam’s advert for a singer to make music like “Madonna through a broken tape machine”. Drawing a line between the joyous fuzzpop of The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart and the minimalist brilliance of Young Marble Giants, the reception at their live shows has been nothing less than rapturous, with audiences blown away by their intensity and compelled by their sparse beauty: Jordan a physical yet inventive presence behind the drum kit, Sam a constant blur of kinetic energy on guitar and Rachel utterly still. It is this dynamic that has been captured over the fourteen deceptively simple pop songs that comprise Flowers debut, Do What You Want To, It’s What You Should Do out Fortuna Pop! (UK).
Most of the songs weigh in at less than three minutes, a deliberate strategy for a band that seeks strength in simplicity. “Our songs tend to be quite short – if there’s something that doesn’t need to be there, we take it out. Hoping for just the best bits,” explains Rachel. “We love all kinds of things, Ramones, Madonna, The Misfits, Iggy & The Stooges, Joy Division, all sorts! The album doesn’t sound too much like any of those, but the songs are short and simple pop songs, and all those artists we love write songs like that.”
Indeed, Flowers’ genius is in their ability to convey a remarkable amount of emotion with minimal instrumentation. Rachel possesses one of those beautiful pop voices to die for, with echoes of Elizabeth Fraser (Cocteau Twins), Hope Sandoval (Mazzy Star) and Harriet Wheeler (The Sundays), whilst Sam’s guitars chime and churn with an incredible intensity and Jordan’s drums rip right through with urgency and precision, resulting in a beautiful album that conjures up a strange and entrancing sort of magic. Haunting, mesmerizing and intense, Do What You Want To, It’s What You Should Do is an impressive calling card from a sensational new band.
Tracklist: Joanna / Rachel’s Song
Fortuna POP! FPOP