LA’s Exploding Flowers are ready to meet your ears with their twangy brand of feel-good indie rock. The band led by Sharif Dumani consists of former members of punk legend Alice Bag’s band, as well as Future Shoxxx, Sex Stains, Cody Chesnutt, the Lassie Foundation and Ray Barbee. Exploding Flowers just recently released a new album, Stumbling Blocks on August 11 via the Beautiful Music, their first new release since 2011.
Dumani is joined by guitarist/bassist Mark Sogomian and drummer Josh Mancell, along with Happy Tsugawa-Banta on keys. The band somehow sounds like you’d expect from the name… dreamy, lo-fi indie rock with hints of psychedelia. Their laid-back, dreamy sound is the music most people would expect to come out of Southern California. But their sound has certainly evolved between the nearly ten years since their first release.
Their debut self-titled album Exploding Flowers definitely has a heavier sound than Stumbling Blocks. It also features a fuzzier, distorted guitars, adding some more angst to their previous sound. One of my favorite songs off their debut is the dark, fuzzy and brooding “Golden Blue Starchild.”
This song drones on with a few screeching pops here and there. The vocals are low and subdued, and it’s definitely one of the heavier tracks of the album.
Get into it here:
You can really hear the difference in their sound when you play this song and “Stumbling Blocks,” the title track off their new album. The song is about as catchy as can be with elements of surf, punk and psych rock. It’s one of the more fast-paced tracks off the album and is sure to get you up and dancing.
Suki Ewers’ (Mazzy Star, Opal) makes a guest appearance on closing track “Are We So Disposable,” adding an ethereal layer of harmony over Dumani’s slightly more prominent voice. The song is sad and sweet at the same time, with some determined acoustic strumming and whimsical xylophone.
Put on Stumbling Blocks to get your carefree summer days started on an energized note.
Photo Credit: Aaron Giesel