Hot Flowers – Camera LP (Hot Garden Records)

Hot Flowers - Camera LP - Hot Garden Records

At what point does punk music evolve into experimental? What properties does the band need to have to claim a title of an experimental band at all? I think this band answers all these questions with their recent full-length album. Hot Flowers were strangers to me until a month ago when I spoke with the band via email, but now, I can’t remove their vinyl from my turntable. Perhaps this French duo includes some virtuosities in their music, but they know when to draw a line, so their music doesn’t sound overly experimental. Hot Flowers measure each ingredient and apply it until they’re satisfied with the result. What’s the most surprising thing is how everything sounds well together. Therefore, you won’t get bored why listening to this record.

But this is not the first album by Hot Flowers. Maybe that’s the reason why Camera LP sounds so good. It is their sixth album since 1995, so these experienced musicians know what styles suit them the best. Therefore you will stumble upon heavy dosages of post-punk sound, a decent amount of noise rock, and almost the same amount of indie rock music. Perhaps these three complementary genres struggle for the sheer dominance in the mix, but it seems post-punk takes all the glory, which is fine with me. Also, you’ll notice some similarities with art-punk, art-rock, and alternative in some compositions, but the beforementioned genres are still dominant. What I adore about this album is the percentage of dynamics, energy, and aggression Hot Flowers apply to their tracks.

Each song carries almost the same tempo, energy, and power but without sounding repetitious. The album has that vividly hearable punk rock energy that’s near and dear to our hearts. However, Hot Flowers thought about applying some melodies over it, so each track has been decorated with catchy themes, melodies, harmonies, and virtuosities performed with guitar. The most surprising thing about this band is how rich their music sounds with a single guitar and drums. Also, your ears will be fooling you all the time because you’ll be wondering if there’s a bass guitar in the mix or not. Whatever may be the case, the Camera sounds superb.

As soon as you put this vinyl record on your turntable, you’ll notice these guys love the late seventies to mid-eighties post-punk, eighties art-punk, nineties noise rock, and nineties indie. These genres drive their inspiration in many directions, and you’ll be surprised how many ideas Hot Flowers invested in their latest full-length. If this appeals to your ears, head to their Bandcamp page and order Camera on vinyl or CD. You won’t be disappointed if you’re profoundly into the beforementioned genres.

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