On The Petals’s first single since last year’s excellent Seven Stops, the group swaps out that record’s jangly guitar tones for lush synth experimentation.
“A. flowers” does in fact feel like a blossom in spring, its chittering drum programming, twinkling bells, gentle guitar adornments, and brushed cymbals creating an atmosphere as delicate as the insect wings featured in the single’s artwork. Aaron Sheedy, his voice manipulated so that it sounds like he’s spent at least some time in the Black Lodge, sings cryptic, circular lyrics, eschewing the traditional verse-chorus-verse structure entirely. Snatches of concrete thought bleed through the shimmery sonics (there’s talk of a “folded insect’s wing” and “safe passage”), with one line in particular coming through especially clearly: “I haven’t filled my lungs like this in such a long, long time.” Even as we enter a brutal winter, “a. flowers” conveys a sense of beauty and possibility, the hope that we might emerge on the other side relatively ok.
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