One more punk rock band was formed in Athens in 1981 to become well known over the Greek borders thanks to their albums, as a Gothic Rock band.
Initialy named as The Gift but soon to change their name to The Flowers Of Romance paying a tribute to Sid Vicious’s band.
Costas Venos on the guitar, Tasos Dimitriadis on the bass and the singer Mike Pougounas started rehearsing with several drummers (Aris Lazarakis was one of them – later to join Chaos Generation and then The Groupies) till George Venizelos joined them to get things started.
Influenced by The Clash, The Damned and Dead Boys, The Flowers Of Romance, in the beginning, were rehearsing with Birth Ward 82, and later shared the studio of Ex Humans and Ausschwitss.
With the above mentioned line up, the band recorded a number of songs that some of them were released on a tape in 1986 titled “Anovis” and on 1992 were featured on the tape “The Flowers Of Romance…The Story So Far” that was released in England by the tape label Music & Elsewhere.
As they were using English lyrics, they didn’t made it to the punk rock compilation “Diataraxi Kinis Isixias” and in 1984 Dimitriadis and Venos left the band.
Pougounas and Venizelos were joined by guitarist Achileas “Lao” Geromoshos and bass player Haris Stavrakas to go on a string of gigs and recorded new material evolving the music style of The Flowers Of Romance from punk rock to gothic.
Gigs were held in universities, clubs and political demonstrations creating this way a great fan base.
The band released the cassette “Anovis” featuring 5 studio songs and 5 live recordings with tracks that were never printed on vinyl such as “It’s Survival” and “This is Radio Christiania” to name but a few.
Most of the times, the audience would follow them after the gig to watch them play a late night volley-ball match against the band Panx Romana.
The singer of Panx Romana got them in touch with Wipe Out Records and in 1988 The Flowers Of Romance had their track “Autumn Kids” featured in the compilation album “Wipe Out presents 12 Raw Greek groups”.
By that time Venizelos was replaced by the drummer Babis “B.B. Romeo” Efthymiou, Stavrakas was replaced by Teo Botinis (later with the band September) while guitarist Platon Papadimitriou joined the band turning The Flowers Of Romance into a five piece.
With this line up they recorded the first Greek gothic rock album “Dorian Grey” which was released in 1990 and also made their first appearance on the Greek national television (at the same show and at the same night when One Night Suzan were on).
“Dorian Grey” was recorded in 65 hours and actualy captured the chronological era of 1986-1989 as tracks like “Kashmir” and “There is Nothing We can’t Solve Together” were writen in 1986.
It was recorded in Blue Moon Studios, during 1989, after the suggestion their close friends and labelmates Film Noir.
Blue Moon Studios were run by Chris Manolitsis, a Greek/South African producer/sound engineer who worked on most of the albums of the “top” greek dark wave bands of the time, such as Yell-O-Yell, Metro Decay, Film Noir and others.
The album featured a cover of Marc Bolan’s “Children Of the Revolution” and was distributed also in Germany, Australia and USA thanks to the band’s connections, selling thousands of copies.
Like all three Flowers Of Romance albums that followed, “Dorian Grey” is considered to be as one of the 50 best Greek rock albums of all times.
Track listing: SIDE A 1) Shooting a love fix 2) In her House 3) Christmas in a Cunthouse 4) Children Of The Revolution 5) 1000 Dying Words
SIDE B 1) There Is Nothing We Can’t Solve Together 2) Kashmir 3) Picture Pillow 4) Opium 5) The Last Summer Night (On Earth)
Click HERE for their next release…