The Bad Flowers are a hard rock trio from Cannock in the Black Country who are about to release their debut studio album ‘Starting Gun’ on 16th February. They worked with producer Adam Beddow at Vigo Studios in this, the follow up to their 2016 EP and they have sure made a bold statement!
The band is ably staffed by Tom Leighton on vocals and guitar, Dale Tonks on bass and Karl Selickis on drums. They are guitar-driven with solid yet bluesy riffs and feature one of the best drum and bass partnerships on the live scene right now. The material is difficult to pigeon-hole but there are nods back to 70s rock influences with an energy that employs melodic hooks with full-on power.
‘Thunder Child’ kicks us off with swagger, attitude and passion. There’s an almost lo-fi feel to the track that provides a warmth to the production and adds a feel that harkens back to that early 70s rock. The momentum of the song lifts and drops to keep the listener interested whilst the guitar work pours over the shuffling drums and walking bass lines. Tremendous.
‘Lions Blood’ employs a steam train tempo and dirty guitars, again dropping out to leave the drums and bass to emphasise the punch back into the track. This diversity in delivery moves to ‘Secrets’ - a more brooding track that blends an initially slower approach with a frenzied build along the way. Released to rock radio on 29th January, this track features sublime bass playing that evidences the musicality of the band as it tracks the guitar rather than hiding in the background. It really is special and adds a dimension many bands would emulate (if they could).
‘Rich Man’ is a staccato, ballsy delivery that pulls no punches. Selickis’ driving bass drum maintains the heartbeat of the song that again flourishes with a searing guitar solo before returning to the lyrical simplicity of the repeated line ‘Life of a rich man’s got me poor’.
‘I Hope’ slows proceedings with Leighton’s solo acoustic guitar and emotive lyrics that come from the heart and tell a very personal story. This is a passionately delivered song that mixes darkness and light and is an interesting sorbet in-between courses on this splendid album.
‘Let’s Behave’ takes the feeling of ‘I Hope’ and builds the emotion with the whole band providing the ammunition to make the point. This is a cleverly constructed album where the order of tracks works well and intertwines tempos and feel, ensuring there are no tracks that ‘don’t fit’.
‘Who Needs a Soul’ returns to an anthemic delivery with loose choppy guitar work and a dirty bass line. It flows to the bombastic delivery of ‘Be Your Man’ where Leighton’s vocal delivery consistently makes the point with authenticity in attitude. The bridge and solo are again foot stomping and will work so so well on stage.
‘Hurricane’ achieves a blend of laid-back and furiosity somehow. It’s the measure of a band that the message in a song doesn’t have to be forced – instead the point can be made with stripping back the music allowing space for the lyrical content.
‘I Don’t Believe’ is a bass driven monster that verges on prog rock at times with the complex structure and mix of tempos. You can tell the band is proud of this arrangement and it works well before moving into the closing track ‘City Lights’. This is a darker delivery with skulking, creeping verses and a Sabbath-esque guitar part. The track is a solid closer for the album and again will work well in the live arena.
I can’t recommend this trio enough. The musicianship, song writing and performance ability is special and I’m certain the future is going to be quite an adventure for the guys. Bravo!
The band kicks off their UK tour with Stone Broken and Jared James Nichols on 22nd February. You can get your hands on either the CD, Limited Edition red vinyl or online at –
Tickets for the upcoming launch and tour can be bagged at –
Check them out at -
Track Listing -
Who Needs A Soul
Be Your Man
I Don’t Believe It