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Icehouse : Flowers

In more ways than one, Flowers were the zeitgeist of Australian music in the 1980s. With a post-punk sensibility tinged with the synth-pop production styling of the era, Flowers was a band of its time. Thirty years after its original release, Flowers' seminal album, Icehouse (from which the band took its subsequent name to avoid confusion with a US band) has been re-released along with bonus material.

 

The album is replete with killer material - the title track, We Can Get Together, Walls, Sister, Can't Help Myself, Boulevard. There's an emphatic edge to Iva Davies' vocals that foreshadows the angst-ridden aesthetic of the New Romantic period loitering just around the corner. Close your eyes, and you're back on the floor of your high school social, feigning bad dance moves like there's no tomorrow.

 

The second disc comprises live tracks recorded around the time of the album's release, including covers of Sorry, Cold Turkey and Funtime; the third disc includes videos for Can't Help Myself, We Can Get Together and a typically linguistically painful effort from Countdown in which Molly explains the background to the band's name change to Icehouse.

 

By the end of the decade, Icehouse had run its creative course - illustrated by Iva Davies' poorly conceived decision to grow a mullet and embrace a pompous brand of orchestral pop. But such transgressions can ever challenge the importance and lasting quality of Icehouse. As Molly said all those years ago, do yourself a favour.

 

Key Track : Sister

 

If You Like This, You'll: probably already have the record - and should probably get this reissue as well.

 

In a word: Iva.