The Long Wryter februari 1986 MEDIA

Looking for Lowe & Townshend

Like I said somewhere earlier in this issue, Fatal Flowers is one of Holland's hottest acts at the moment, and rightly so! Taking in account the short time that they've been around, it's incredible that this band already have reached a level at which they can compete with practically any foreign band currently coming through our town. Their sound grabs you by the throat and will never let go as soon as you hear their records or, preferably, see them in concert! England's already beginning to smell the scent of today's "tulips from Amsterdam" by means of the sound who rewarded the Flowers' first mini-album with four stars. This will certainly help the trendy Enlish record buyer to go out and at least have a listen to this fantastic slice of vinyl. And since I like all you Americans (well, not all of you) so much, I'll give you free advice. I understand that you care a lot for our 'sixties' bands like Q65, Outsiders, Motions, Golden Earrings (!) etcetra. You even like to pay a lot of money for their long out-of-print records. Well, to save you lots of money in the future, I suggest you go out and buy the Flowers' record right now, before they vanish and can only be found at record fairs or in some crazy auction list in one of the numerous collector's magazines. You do that, and one day you'll all be grateful to me, for the Flowers' record will belong to the prime of your record collection. "Say it with Flowers!"

Our roving reporter & jack of all trades Rene Klaassen was just in time to pick 3 of the 4 Flowers before they were sent somewhere quiet to finish their second album. With a watering-pot in one hand and a bottle of pokon in the other, Rene started to pour in the following questions over them:

How did Fatal Flowers form?
Richard: It must've been sept. '84. Henk a I just had stepped out of a band called MIDNIGHT TO SIX and since we wanted to form a new band, we had to go out and find new musicians. We've been looking for them extensively, even as far as England. However, it was impossible to find someone willing and able to play the music we had in mind! Anyway, MIDNIGHT TO SIX often played gigs with another band, called AWACS. So we knew Erwin Wolters and Marco who were in that band. Just for fun, since we had nothing else to do, the four of us jammed a lot and one day THE OTHER SIDE (a now defunct and sadly missed legendary beatcombo-TLW) asked us to support them on one of their gigs and that really started it all! We've been practicing 4/5 times a week since then and in the end that became too much of a struggle for Erwin who had his studies to take care of. He decided to leave and we had to find us a new guitarist. Dirk (Heuff) played in a band called the BOYSCOUTS and we'd seen him play couple of times. It occured to us that they didn't let him play, as in freaking out, that much and with a little persuasion he was quickly convinced that his guitarplaying would be hetter of if he played with us! With this line up, we did our first gig on jan. 1 1985.
Tell me more about the cover-songs you're doing. Do they show your influences?
Marco: At first we played some BYRDS and VELVET UNDERGROUND songs and also "Don't Let Me Down" we did that in punk version. At the moment we play Rock and Roll and R and B songs like some stuff from DR. FEELGOOD (The band!).
Richard: Our sound is more heavy lately. We do those covers because we like them. Especially during the encores. But we're not exactly copying them, instead we give them the FF treatment!
Does an 'Amsterdam Scene' really exist, and if so, are there any possibilities for a band like your within that scene?
Richard: Well, yeah I think there is a, what you would call a scene, but at the same time I think it's fading fast! This year will be crucial for a lot of bands of the so called scene, with almost every band I know of, releasing records on either a major label or independent. We were the first band to get a contract with a major label and everybody went 'what impossible', they really round it hard to believe. I think it's a real pity when a good band can't get decent recording facilities due to the limited financial possibilities of the independents.
How did you become supporting act to the Long Ryders during their first tour in Holland?
Richard: Ha, after we played with them in Amsterdam, we just called up the owner of the concerthall the Ryders would be playing, telling him that FF and the Long Ryders came in one package deal and they simply wnt for that!
Marco: Playing support act to the Long Ryders is probably ono of the best things that could've happen to us. They're very nice, and we like them a lot!
Who is writing the songs and how are they written?
Richard: We all write, but I wrote most of it. Sometimes I co-write with either Henk or Marco.
(to Dirk) Do you write also?
Dirk: No, well, not yet! FF and my previous band are so worlds apart and I had very little experience playing in a band. I didn't understand what made a song, a SONG, you know what I mean? But I'm beginning to understand now, so who knows, maybe in the future I'll write my own songs. Hey, but I think I've done a great job in getting the band to play "Fire"!
Do you think a professional band can survive without a hit in Holland? I mean, can you make a living out of just playing in a R and R band?
Richard and Marco: Definitely not!! If not for the moncy from the unemployment benefit, that is. Otherwise, forget it
When can we expect new material?
Richard: We're going somewhere quiet now, away from the pressures of city life to write a couple of songs for the next album, we already wrote enough for one side of an album. We hope our next pletter will be released somewhere in april or may. There might be a single first.
Any thoughts 'bout who you want for producer?
Richard: Pete Townshend or Jimmy Miller!!
Marco: Nick Lowe!
Dirk: Alvin Lee!
Huh, what about Rory Gallagher, Dirk?
Dirk: Yeah, great!!!
Richard: Just wishful thinking of course, we never could afford any of those guys.
Did it surprise you, considering the fact that FF haven't been around for a long time, you've already made quite an impact?
Richard: At one time it did get a little too much but on the other hand, I think that the band is developping much quicker due to the pressures, succes is laying on us. Before we knew it someone was telling us 'okay, within 3 weeks you'll be recording in London!' and that came as a shock. Struck like lightning! Boy, we were only around for 3 weeks(!) then.
What was it like, recording over there?
Richard: We had very limited studio time. But all went well. That's the good thing recording with Craig Leon, he's got a lot of experience and knows what he's doing. Bit it sure was guite impressive to be recording in the same studios as PINK FLOYD did!
Okay guys, thanks for the interview and lots of luck with the new album. Right, so you've noticed their name appears a couple of times in this issue and I bet you'll be pretty curious by now how they really sound. We planned a flexi of FATAL FLOWERS to go with this issue, but it all became too expensive and so that plan fell through, better luck next time! We can only advice you to go out and buy their records (you won't be dissapointed). If you, by any chance, have problems in obtaining either their mini-album or the single "Billy", get in touch with us, ask for details and we'll get you one! In the meantime: try and pick some Flowers!

Fatal Flowers discography

Fatal Flowers (six track mini album) WEA 240 7001 1985

Billy c/w Who Loves The Sun WEA 248967-7 1985

Note: There's also a recording of a radiosession. FF play about 8 songs and among them a cover of "Won't Be Wrong" (Byrds).

bron: Rene Klaasen, The Long Wryter, a Long Ryders fanzine Februari 1986

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