402. Hothouse Flowers – “People”

I’d forgotten about the vinyl Hs, so here come three old acquisitions of mine.

This debut release used to get loads of airtime in my teenage bedroom.  It taught me cool words like “sirocco”, while the look of lead singer may well have partially inspired my  undergraduate long hair.

This album has a sound that is quite rare in my collection.  I don’t own any U2 (since the cassette purge), nor any Van Morrison: i.e. this has a slightly overwrought, celtic-tinged rock sound, with gospel overtones.

Liam (aforementioned fashion icon and leadsinger), has an emotion-packed voice that carries even the more cliched tracks on here, while the mainly acoustic strumming, key-tinkling and bohdran tapping stays the right side of sea-shanty-land.

I sense that perhaps that this Don’t Go track, so evocative of that late ’80s neo-hippy vibe, might be what Jack Johnson sounds like to the young and impressionable of today, but it still gets me all misty eyed and vocalising:

My affection for this act was just a flash in the pan (I own no more of their catalogue), but I saw the band belt a few of the tracks out live in 2006 (appropriately in Byron Bay), and it all still worked for me… and I’m not sorry:

File under: Power to ya


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