Local Love: Flower Politics
Flower Politics, Photo: Uncredited/Courtesy of Artist/Facebook
I would guess, that most people who read this know very little about the bedroom pop genre. The ever growing space in the music world is typically full of endearing and heartfelt artists who tend to fall between sugary pop and angst driven sadness. I also, don’t expect you to have heard of Houston’s Flower Politics, but you should know that the primarily solo artist has dropped over twenty releases over the past three years, and if nothing else, they’re prolific. On their latest record, New Beginnings from December of last year, they really stretch their wings and offers up one of the most endearing and honest sounding albums I’ve heard in a good while. Completely raw in its form, the songs have a depth that’s more universal than most people would understand on the surface alone while showcasing a mix of the immediacy of now and an unconventional approach to songwriting.
The lo-fi opening of “I hope I changed” offers up an echoed vocal that sounds like someone singing directly from the heart, while the strum of an acoustic guitar keeps the pace of the song before a dual vocal hops in to disappear pretty quickly. When it returns, there’s a third vocal that finds its way in while the hoarse undertones mixed with soft levels create a spirit that truly permeates your soul. Two songs later, a more produced or at least, higher production quality offers “give me your pain” up for the listener. Though the song is primarily acoustic guitar and vocals, the song feels like someone crying out to a world that won’t listen while echoes of artists like Mary Lou Lord and early Mary Timony seem to come through the heartfelt lyrics.
The honesty in the overall sound of the following song, “you’ve made a home” can at times remind you of Angel Olsen through the eyes of Waxahatchee, while never seeming to copy either. There’s just something gut wrenching to the sound of someone singing songs that sound like they have to get them out before the pages of their diary are burned in front of them. However that’s what happening here as Flower Politics offers up acoustic pop that you can identify with while loving every note of it.
The weight of the simple orchestration of “I will not go alone” says more without lots of instrumentation to get in the way. In fact, after just one listen, you can’t imagine the song with anything other than what’s on the track. The album gets closed off by what feels like a deeply personal narrative on “not done living yet,” where the lyrics sound like those of someone who’s been on either end of a rash decision. However, there’s a hope to the future that emanates throughout, making you hope that the music for Flower Politics is nothing if not at least therapeutic.
New Beginnings is possibly just that, a new beginning from an artist that’s stayed in the shadows long enough to exist without making a big to do about it. This album proves that you can steer from the norms of hook writing and general pop structure, while still existing in the genre without following anyone else’s rules but the code in which you yourself live by. There’s nothing formulaic about what Flower Politics is doing here, and that’s what I love about it. The raw and emotive nature of just wanting these songs out into the world should be enough for anyone, while the earnest employment of its immediacy shouldn’t be lost on the listener as well. You can catch Flower Politics when they perform with Naked Naps at Satellite Bar on February 27. The all ages show has doors at 8 pm and a TBA cover charge.