Florist
Florist


4.0
excellent

Review

by Sunnyvale STAFF
July 31st, 2022 | 45 replies


Release Date: 07/29/2022 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Late Blooming

New York-based group Florist’s self-titled album is a bit of a strange release for a whole bunch of reasons. It’s a record which feels about as far from mandatory summer-time listening as you can get, but it’s been my biggest musical obsession during a relentlessly hot stretch of days. It’s a nineteen-track behemoth chock full of interludes and little scraps of songs, but somehow manages to reach cohesion. It’s Florist’s longest album (by far) but remarkably becomes their most consistent and effective work. All this means I’ve got a hell of a task before me explaining and exploring this one. Let’s begin.

Florist is glum and stripped-back, best suited for a rainy day or a solitary moment with a lot on the mind. While the preponderent genre influence is still the lo-fi indie folk which the group has reliably pursued for three previous albums, slowcore and drone come to mind (more in style than in sound) with the album’s resistance to easy melodies and emphasis on subtlety and repetition. The lyrics, when comprehensible through the murk, are often cryptic, but emphasize musings on interpersonal relationships and the passage of time. They’re good stuff, forming the cherry on top of a record which produces a well-crafted mood and emerges as strangely addictive.

The tracklist here appears bloated from the get-go, and listening reveals a bevy of instrumentals, ambient interludes, and scarcely fleshed-out little numbers to go along with a smattering of lengthier folk tunes. To make this jigsaw fit together is quite an accomplishment, but one that is astonishingly achieved. It helps that every song, whether the lonesome ambient opener “June 9th Nighttime” or the repeated distorted “Bells” interludes or the fully fleshed-out folk tunes like “Spring In Hours” or “Dandelion” maintain the same hazed-out aesthetic, fitting of the album artwork’s muted color palette.

With a runtime of just under fifty-eight minutes, Florist is the band’s most sprawling work by a wide margin (indeed, it’s nearly twice as long as the group’s first two records). If this was a prog-metal release, I’d just feel grateful that the band didn’t feel the need to tack on an extra thirty minute epic at the end, but for Florist’s chosen genre, this feels excessive and runs a serious danger of getting bland by the end. The shocking thing is that, even if the songs here aren’t particularly active, the listener somehow never feels the extended runtime. Nearly an hour floats by in an almost trancelike feeling of dreary beauty.

While this review might be odd, given it’s structured around discussing three different paradoxes which struck me about this unusual record, the bottom line is that Florist is a really nice work, the sound of a band that’s been around the block a few times and has just now leveled up. After a series of good-to-great efforts, the self-titled manages to present a much more unified mood than its predecessors and additionally cuts out the spoken word moments which (in my opinion) greatly detracted from previous albums. Here, it all comes together. Don’t expect something revolutionary, but for folk fans, and anyone who enjoys atmospheric music more generally, this one’s worth a try.



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user ratings (24)
3.5
great


Comments:Add a Comment 
Sunnyvale
Staff Reviewer
July 31st 2022


4072 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Weird album, weird review...



Not that this record is especially "out there", as there are plenty of artists doing indie folk in a similar vein, but this is just an album which feels like it shouldn't work as well as it does. Kinda magical in that way.

Slex
July 31st 2022


14553 Comments


Bet this is incredible, hyped

A fine and handsome review my friend

Sowing
Moderator
July 31st 2022


41803 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good review! I remember thinking Emily Alone was pretty good, so I might check this out.

Sunnyvale
Staff Reviewer
July 31st 2022


4072 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks guys! Could see you both digging this

theBoneyKing
July 31st 2022


22622 Comments


Haven’t listened to them before but I’m looking forward to hearing this.
That said, can we start a petition for when multiple artists have the same name, where one is far more famous than the others, to let that one just have the bare name with no parenthetical? That’s already the case for Nirvana, for example.

theBoneyKing
July 31st 2022


22622 Comments


Lmao did someone really add the “USA” to their name just to piss me off even more.

Slex
July 31st 2022


14553 Comments


Ngl sounds like a Johnny move lol

Sowing
Moderator
July 31st 2022


41803 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ok fine, I'll change it back ;-)

Purpl3Spartan
July 31st 2022


4479 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Knew either you or sowing would be on this. Nice writeup

DoofDoof
July 31st 2022


11906 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Much better than their last one, might even be a 4 after a few more goes

theBoneyKing
July 31st 2022


22622 Comments


Lol, thanks Sowing. Nothing is as bad as the case of Bedhead though, where there is the Bedhead that I assume most here know about (the 90s slowcore band) and there’s also a moderately popular modern bedroom pop artist called Bedhead and they’re both from Texas so are currently in the db with USA-TX and USA-TX-2 as parentheticals.

DoofDoof
July 31st 2022


11906 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Should use first line of each of their addresses

Slex
July 31st 2022


14553 Comments


Lol perfect

anat
Contributing Reviewer
July 31st 2022


4908 Comments


the simpler answer is to ask them to coalesce

anat
Contributing Reviewer
July 31st 2022


4908 Comments


slowcore-pop, aka slop

Sowing
Moderator
July 31st 2022


41803 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

listening to this and getting some big thief vibes



it's really good so far

Sunnyvale
Staff Reviewer
July 31st 2022


4072 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks, @Purpl3Spartan!



@Sowing, yeah, definitely some similarities to the sparser side of Big Thief.

Sowing
Moderator
July 31st 2022


41803 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

reminds me so much of lenker's songs, especially 'dandelion'

DoofDoof
July 31st 2022


11906 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Her voice and phrasing are so similar to Lenker’s here yup

Atari
Staff Reviewer
July 31st 2022


27451 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

can always count on Sunny to cover the good stuff. nicely done!



she's always had potential but this sounds like it's potentially her best. stoked to hear the rest (I'm on track 8)



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