The Bad Flowers

The Bad Flowers are new to me, according to their website the trio hail from the Midlands. Cannock just north of Wolverhampton to be precise, an area noted for its rock and metal heritage from the seventies. Formed in February 2014, vocalist / guitarist Tom Leighton, bassist Dale Tonk and drummer Karl Selickis cite Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath and The Who as their influences, so it sounds like we’re in for some classic rock riffs on their self-titled EP.

The CD kicks off with Can You Feel It? An anthem of such power and intensity that when the singer pleads “Can you feel my pain” in the chorus I believe him. The guitar solo’s not bad either, overdriven without being too fuzzed up with a touch of subtle wah pedal – a good opener. City Lights brings the pace down a notch with a doomy metal riff that leads into a slightly quicker verse and chorus. It tells the tale of a guy living on the streets with no dough; but can’t leave as he’s addicted to the city lights, another tasty solo leads into the final chorus. Track three, Big Country is probably the weakest song on display here. A by rote account of life on the road, we’ve heard it all before – “Keep my wheels on the road, and keep that sunlight on my back, I don’t know what I’m looking for, but I just know I need a little bit more.” You know the sort of thing-original it ain’t, but hey; who said rock should be pushing any boundaries lyrically, everybody’s too busy head-banging to notice. The last track Run, Run, Run is a slight improvement; a plodding verse followed by a quicker chorus espousing the frustrations of working a job you hate, we’ve all been there.

Overall impression, a game of two halves. Can You Feel It? and City Lights are definitely the stronger of the four songs, Big Country and Run, Run, Run suffer from bland lyrics and weak melodies. The musicianship is good; a solid rhythm section and an assured guitarist, but I wasn’t too keen on Tom Leighton’s voice which over the four tracks I found a bit forced. Apparently they are a good live band pulling in rave reviews and a strong following, so it might be worth checking them out if they ever venture into this neck of the woods.

The Bad Flowers

Line Up
Tom Leighton – Guitar/Vocals
Dale Tonks – Bass/Vocals
Karl Selickis – Drums

Track Listing
Can You Feel It?
City Lights
Big Country
Run, Run, Run


Words by John Cherry.