Looking for something to bliss out to? Sunshine Terror Babies is it. Soothing drum fills, soft vocals, sparse guitar riffs and soaring synths make up the moody and relaxed atmosphere of Melbourne-via-Perth duo Flower Drums‘ debut album. The album opener, ‘Night Swims’, is immediately indicative of the record; a dreamy ballad that would perfectly soundtrack a night with a lover.
That may be what’s so addictive about the next track, ‘Back To Earth’, a sensual duet with Ash Hendricks. It feels so right to have a romantic number featuring a female voice over Flower Drums’ sweet atmospheric beats. It could’ve worked on any track.
While there are still notable moments in the back-end of the record, Sunshine Terror Babies falls flat around the half-way mark. The songs are consistent. But that’s the biggest problem – they’re too consistent. There just isn’t enough urgency throughout the record, even when there’s a semi-breakdown, like on ‘No Guarantees’, Flower Drums still struggle to keep the momentum flowing.
Apart from the lovely minute and a half of ‘Up’, an uplifting interlude that breaks the album apart, the trajectory of Sunshine Terror Babies doesn’t necessarily shift throughout its entire duration. Because of its constant lagging nature, the listen becomes somewhat of a monotonous one.
While Sunshine Terror Babies dawdles along in some places, there’s definitely still a place for the ’80s synth/dream-pop throwback found here. The record, and Flower Drums, have all the correct ingredients for something special, but it just doesn’t quite reach the high level expected. But Sunshine Terror Babies is a step in the right direction, and with some more honing and tweaking, Flower Drums are going to hit the nail on the head. There’s already something that keeps bringing listeners back, however, there’s still room for improvement. And that’s the most exciting aspect.
‘Night Swims’, ‘Back To Earth (ft. Ash Hendricks)’, ‘With You’