Ultimate Love Party Jamz with One Hundred Flowers & Elaine Greer
What I like most about One Hundred Flowers is that they are utterly impossible to pigeonhole into any one musical genre. Their debut LP, Mechanical Bride, could be over-simplified as complex and heady indie-pop, one might even resort to lazy journalism and compare One Hundred Flowers to The New Pornographers, The Shins, Stars, DeVotchka and/or Belle & Sebastian; but a sublime knack for surrealist song architectures also showcases their propensity towards experimental, progressive and psychedelic tendencies. Don’t get me wrong, this five-piece band from Austin is not nearly as inaccessibly oblique as those descriptions might lead you to believe; because, despite the intricate layers of instrumentation and harmonies and ever-mutating song structures, One Hundred Flowers makes incredibly beautiful music.
Upon hearing their first single (“Rat Trap“) my favorite indie music magazine — Magnet Magazine — named Mechanical Bride their “Most-Looked-Forward-to-Release” and deemed “Rat Trap” to be “indie-pop gold.” With the release of Mechanical Bride, One Hundred Flowers found themselves to be the darlings of local and national critics alike. It was certainly no surprise when Mechanical Bride landed on the CMJ 200 charts during the second week of its release. One Hundred Flowers’ yet-to-be-released sophomore release, Lapses and Losses, is one of my most anticipated albums of 2012.
The 23-year old Texan, Elaine Greer is a very organic songwriter. A multi-instrumentalist (guitar, ukulele and piano), Greer’s songs are meticulously crafted indie-pop ballads that co-exist with prominent folk and old country influences; but it is Greer’s voice and her band’s lush vocal harmonies that really stand out. (Until recently, Greer also sang and played keyboards and guitar with The Sour Notes.) Greer’s songs tend to be written in the style of honest confessionals, revolving around love, shame, ethical issues and stuff like that.
Greer was living in Houston when she started her first band, The Bluebirds, at age 17. She went solo shortly thereafter, and in 2009, Greer released her debut EP, Making Plans and Going Places. Greer then relocated from Houston to Austin and released a full-length album Annotations (2011). (Note: Annotations appeared on my Bestof 2011: Austin Music list.) Elaine Greer + Friends (her Austin-based band) are planning to start 2012 off right, with a west coast tour and a new album.
One Hundred Flowers and Elaine Greer will be playing at Ultimate Love Party Jamz Vol. XXX at Cheer Up Charlies on Friday, February 10th along with Boy, Cartographers and Western Ghost House. What a fantastic line-up to fall in love with!