Meet The Band: Flowers
London trio Flowers, are back this month with their second album Everybody's Dying to Meet You. Over the course of ten intensely thrilling pop songs, singer Rachel Kennedy’s ethereal vocals and Sam Ayres textured guitar are backed by the powerful, metronomic beat of drummer Jordan Hockley.
Flowers began with Sam’s year-long search for a singer, and when he posted one last fateful advert, stating he wanted to make pop songs like "early Madonna through a broken tape machine", this led him to Rachel. Their initial demos were polished up by none other than Bernard Butler, and turned into their album debut Do What You Want To, It's What You Should Do released in 2013.
For Everybody’s Dying to Meet You the band retreated to Bark Studios in Walthamstow to work with producer Brian O’Shaughnessy. They are also currently touring the UK and will play Cardiff’s Moon Club on March 4. Andy Howells recently put questions to Rachel Kennedy from the group.
Who are you and how did you come together?
We're Flowers, individually Sam, Rachel and Jordan. Sam formed the band, he'd known Jordan in college and remembered he was a really good drummer, and he found me through an ad looking for a singer!
Where are you from?
Sam and I are from London, Jordan's moved around all over the place but now he lives in London too.
How would you describe your music style?
Sometimes noisy indie pop.
What's been your best live experience?
There have been a lot of different "best"s... For example, we did a show in New York a couple of years ago and we thought it was the WORST we'd ever sounded, but it went down the best ever with the crowd, maybe because they'd been waiting a long time to see us there, so even though we thought it was a disaster at the time the audience's reaction made it one of our favourite ever shows, I guess the flood of relief helped!
Can you tell us about your new album Everybody’s Dying to Meet You?
Yes we're very excited everyone gets to hear this album soon! It always seems like an eternity between the time you finish recording an album and the time everyone gets to hear it, by the time it comes out we've gone through being really excited about it and then a bit nervous about it and we start second guessing a lot of things. It's a great feeling when people have positive reactions to it, makes us feel a bit less crazy for making it in the first place! This album sounds quintessentially like "Flowers", to us at least. It's a mixture of our home demo sort of sound, lo-fi and tapey, and our live sound. Our first album came out sounding a lot cleaner and more polished than we'd hoped, so it's nice to get the more analog sound we love on this album.
You're touring shortly are you looking forward to that?
Yes very much, we love touring! And we're very happy that we'll be seeing more of the UK on this tour. It's great revisiting places we've been before and seeing so many friendly faces, and it's also very exciting turning up somewhere new, and having no idea whether one or a hundred people will turn up, getting to meet them and talk about music, play for them, and go to the next place, you feel like a nomad for a couple of weeks and it's wonderful. We'd never want to come home if it wasn't for our dog!
What can people expect from your forthcoming Cardiff gig?
Lots of new songs, and a few old ones too, it's near the end of the tour so you guys will have us at our peak performance (nicely warmed up, but not too exhausted and ill yet)!
Will there be more visits to Wales?
We’ll definitely be back yes! We've been lucky enough to play Cardiff a few times actually, so next time it'd be great to play some different places in Wales too, it's so beautiful there.
Where can people hear your music?
The best hub for information is our Facebook, - we often put up links to new songs there, as well as information about shows etc. You can also go to our Soundcloud for songs or if you have Spotify we're on there too! (or just search for "Flowers", we're the first artist listed under "Brandon Flowers")
- Andy Howells is a freelance entertainment writer.
- A version of this Q&A appears in The South Wales Argus entertainment supplement, The Guide, on March 4, 2016.