Friday, May 9, 2008
The Flowerpot Men (Part 2 of 2)
For their third release, 1986's Alligator Bait EP, The Flowerpot Men expanded to a four-piece.... maybe. Drummer Mark Irving is undoubtedly a real person, but the "Mr. Delmardes" credited with keyboards and programming has never shown up anywhere else. The "foursome" are joined by singers Sam Brown and Margo Buchanan on backing vocals. The two songs on side one, "Alligator Bait" and "Django", fall into the Flowerpots' established formula, but they widen their horizons on the B-side. "Watching the Pharoahs" (sic) has light, boppy verses divided by a rocking chorus, and "Sharpen My Heart" is a slow, creepy ballad. Also recorded in 1986 was The Janice Long Session, a four-song live performance for Radio One. On this record (recorded March 9, 1986, broadcast April 24, 1986, and produced by Barry Andrews) the band consists of the core duo of Ben Watkins and Adam Peters plus the two backup singers from Alligator Bait. What's notable is how close the performances sound to the studio recordings (most of it is programmed), but also how distinctive Peters' electric cello sounds. So that's what those deep whooshing sounds are. The session also introduced a new Flowerpot Men song, the bouncy "Beat City." That song would appear on the Ferris Bueller's Day Off soundtrack, but no soundtrack album was ever released. Does anyone know if that was a studio version, or this live-in-the-studio session? The Janice Long Session was their last record before they signed to Polydor and became Sunsonic, so this concludes my Flowerpot Men posts. Get both 4-song EPs here or here.