The Pretty Flowers Grapple With Useless Authority Structures For ‘A Company Sleeve’

[Cover photo credit to Sami Drasin]

LA-based Indie Rock band The Pretty Flowers have just released their new album A Company Sleeve, via Arizona-based indie label Double Helix Records. The somewhat unusual inspiration behind the album comes from vocalist/guitarist Noah Green’s experience of toxic energy in the workplace and finding ways to navigate it through channeling the stress into music.

Green shares:

The writing of the album came at a time in my life where I was going through a difficult time at work, with an absolute nightmare of a boss. Being able to absorb that toxic energy and repurpose it into the songs for their frenetic and melodic new album was his way of dealing with that stress. 

For the first time, I was seeing this terrible system that was in place, not to help me (or anyone else in the same situation), but to condone this person’s unethical actions, just because they were already set up in a position of power and it was easier to leave them there. That feeling of helplessness and trying to figure out how to navigate an oppressive system in order to survive (mentally, economically, etc.) cuts through many situations people from all walks of life go through every day. Pushing back against meaningless authority and finding a version of hope or comfort in art and music is what A Company Sleeve wound up being about.

The album’s first single “Baby Food” is accompanied by an animated video in mixed media complete with bikes, dogs and a paper route, ending in an obligatory concert.

Drummer Sean Johnson explains:

When Noah and I were drumming up video concepts, he offhandedly mentioned an animated video and a Christmas light in my head went off. I reached out to [animator] Nathan Sonenfeld, who I’ve known for over 20 years, and asked if it’s something he’d be into. He and his creative partner took to the idea and came up with a really great concept that matched Noah’s lyrics. It’s this great stew of textures and styles both old and new that I feel is really unique and special. We certainly have never done anything like this before and I think I speak for the whole band when I say we love it and we hope everyone else does. 

Produced by the band’s guitarist/vocalist Jake Gideon, A Company Sleeve was engineered by Adam Lasus (Lily’s, Yo La Tengo, Madder Rose, Helium) at Studio Red and mastered by Matthew Barnhart (Superchunk, Bob Mould, METZ).  

The Pretty Flowers have previously released one album of original material, Why Trains Crash (2018), plus a handful of singles and a covers collection, Golden Beat Sessions (2019), while going on numerous West Coast tours. Their songs have been featured on two seasons of Showtime’s Shameless, season 2 of the CW’s Nancy Drew, Peacock TV’s The Resort, and most recently Syfy’s Resident Alien

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