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The Flowers Of Romance – Brilliant Mistakes

18 May

Pougounas/HusseyIn 1995 Mike Pougounas and Wayne Hussey met in London.  The Flowers Of Romance were on pre-production of the album “Brilliant Mistakes” and Hussey was interested in listening to what they were up to.

A few months prior to this meeting, Hussey released the album “Neverland” with The Mission.  The two men agreed to work on the recordings of the new Flowers Of Romance album that same year following The Mission’s tour.

During this time the line-up of the Greek band was: Mike Pougounas – Vocals, Haris Stavrakas – Bass, Dimitris Koukas – Drums, and Giorgos Katsanos (who replaced Laura Gini during the pre-production period) – Keyboards.  Averkios “Akis” Hatziantoniadis joined them on the guitars.

flowers of romanceThe band recorded in Greece and did additional recordings at The Mission’s studio in Bristol.

Wayne Hussey chose to have Steve Whitfield, The Mission’s main sound engineer at that time, as the sound engineer for “Brilliant Mistakes”.  Whitfield previously worked with The Cure on the “Wish” album and he later became the producer of many English, American and Canadian bands, such as Terrorvision, which is one who pops into my mind right now.

“Brilliant Mistakes” had a few notable parameters:

  • Hatziantoniadis played the guitar on the album, but he rushed out of the country right after the recordings and a few gigs were done.  So, in the photos of this album, one can see Panos Economakis (member of the band Min Pirovolite Ton Pianista) who replaced Hatziantoniadis upon his departure.  While recording the album, the band had promo photos taken with the then-current guitarist but he left so fast that the new guitarist appeared on the photo sessions of the album.
  • Giorgos Bousounis (ex member of the band “Alive She Died”, and later with the band “Ammos”) recorded the keyboards in the studio and followed the band on a number of gigs.
  • Evi “Watson” Hasapidou did the backing vocals, and Wayne Hussey not only provided additional backing vocals but he also played additional guitars on “The Crying Puppet” and “Channel Z”.

flowersofromancebrilliantThe cooperation of the band with Wayne Hussey was heavily promoted in Greece through the music media and it was also covered by some political newspapers as well.  The outcome was a very good 12-track album that helped the band gain international recognition.

The album was released in late 1996 in Greece (Hussey recorded the Mission album “Blue” in between the sessions of the Greek album) and the band went on a string of gigs to promote it.

Tracklisting:

  1. All I Can Remember
  2. Fetish
  3. For the Wolf Within
  4. Reptile Dance
  5. Black Snow
  6. In Blood Eternal
  7. Carnival Of Souls
  8. Love
  9. Channel Z
  10. A Word From The Gutter
  11. In A Vacant Place
  12. The Crying Puppet

The group’s songs were on heavy rotation on the radio and the band was frequently on the TV screens for interviews or live performances.  Their track “Channel Z” reached 5th place on the radio charts (U2 was #1) and “In A Vacant Place” reached  #12 a little later, with Garbage at the top of the Top 20.

Studio pics (FM Records promo sheet)In 1997, the German gothic label Hyperium re-released the album, promoting the band as “The Mission Epigons”.  They also released the 4-track single “Channel Z” for clubs and featured the song “20th Century Junk” from the “Pleasure & the Pain” sessions, as well.

The last Flowers Of Romance gig at Thessaloniki was in 1997.

By some weird twist of luck, Tapes Gone Loose blogspot was there and recorded it.

You can find it here plus a lot of other stuff about the band.

The band  played for the last time at Rodon Club – Athens, along with four label mates, Echo Tattoo, Drums & Stories and Bella Union on April 12 1997.

A few months later, Rodon Club would close forever.

The following vid is from Mega Channel, a tv channel that was covering the show.

During this same year the band supported the Sisters Of Mercy and the New Model Army on the Rock of Godz Festival and started making schedules for a European tour.  Bill Laswell was interested in the album and the American gothic label Cleopatra Records, asked to feature the “Crying Puppet” on one of their compilations, but unfortunately, due to contractual obligations with FM Records, this was denied.

About that time, Oliver Rοch, the head of Hyperium Records was killed in a tragic motorcycle accident.  With the Greek managers of the band being slow in finding European promoters for a tour, nerves started getting loose in the band.

liveDuring the summer of 1997, Lefteris Strouggaris was playing the guitar for the Flowers Of Romance because Economakis left to reform his old band, and Vasilis Vasiliadis replaced George Bousounis on the keyboards.

With personal problems getting bigger between the band members, Pougounas announced that he wanted out.  Strouggaris followed him to form the industrial Goth band Nexus and Vasiliadis left the band to join the group Axaioi.

Stavrakas and Koukas were left behind, but out of the respect they had for Pougounas and his history with the band, decided to call it a day.

The Flowers Of Romance story ended after 18 years as one of the most successful and respected Greek bands.  Along with other Greek bands with English lyrics, such as the Last Drive, Panx Romana, No Man’s Land, Blue Jeans and many others, they were one of the “old guards” bridging the early days of the 80’s into the late days of 90’s.

Click HERE for NEXUS

 
 

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2 responses to “The Flowers Of Romance – Brilliant Mistakes

  1. Music Works

    May 19, 2009 at 5:49 pm

    “Brilliant Mistakes”, is one of the most brilliant releases of the Greek rock discography. Respect.

     
  2. http://tinyurl.com/37thhelan55984

    February 5, 2013 at 2:40 am

    “The Flowers Of Romance – Brilliant Mistakes tribe4mian’s weblog” was in fact a good read and also I personally ended up being extremely content to find the blog post. Many thanks-Gracie

     

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