“Music is not a competition, it’s a community. If you can remember that then your art will have more meaning and more impact.”
Twickets caught up with up-and-coming indie rockers flor to talk about their latest album, ‘ley lines’, the perks of taking the DIY approach and what it’s like to share a record label with Paramore and Panic! At The Disco.
Formed in a small Oregon town by a group of high school friends looking to have some fun with music, flor is the product of constant experimentation and a bucket load of talent. Blending infectious indie rock rhythms with their own distinctive synth-pop style, the quartet have been turning heads in the alternative world since their 2015 EP, ‘Sounds’, which led to a bucket-list-topping record contract with renowned label, Fueled By Ramen.
Now fresh from the release of their second full-length album, ‘ley lines’, and with bassist Dylan Bauld juggling band life with handling production duties for artists such as Liam Payne and Halsey, there’s never a dull moment in the world of flor. But busy seems to suit them well, and with the band on better form than ever, we sat down with frontman Zach Grace to talk about flor’s recent trip to the UK, their unique connection with their fans and what comes next for them.
How did you all meet and why did you decide to form flor together?
Zach: McKinley, Dylan, and myself grew up together in our tiny hometown and starting making music together in high school. Kyle joined us a few years after graduating and we all moved to LA where flor really started to take shape.
You recently released your second full-length album, ‘ley lines’, how would you describe that record to someone who hasn’t heard it yet?
Zach: Anthemic meets ambient, energy meets intimacy. A dream-pop meets alt-rock delight of an album, if I may be so bold.
You rounded off your year by playing a couple of headline shows in London and Manchester. What were you most excited to see and experience over in the UK?
Zach: We come to the UK for the pubs and the football. Nothing quite like a pint and a good match on the telly. Oh, and far too many Jaffa Cakes.
You’re also heading on a pretty extensive tour across the US early in the new year, what are you most looking forward to?
Zach: This next headliner in the states is taking us to entirely new cities. We are excited to get a feel for the new places we haven’t been before and to play songs from the album that we haven’t had the chance to play yet.
flor are signed to Fueled By Ramen, a label well-known for artists such as Paramore, Panic! At The Disco and Twenty One Pilots. What is it like being a part of that community?
Zach: We appreciate the Fueled By Ramen family so much. They’ve pushed us in challenging ways whilst letting us remain true to what flor is all about. That freedom is what makes us love them so much.
‘ley lines’ was made in your bassist Dylan’s living room, with no assistance from anyone outside of the band. How important is the DIY approach to flor, and why did you decide to go down this route?
Zach: DIY is what we are all about. When you have someone as talented at producing as Dylan in the band, and the chemistry between us works as well as it does, it’s hard to want to disrupt that balance. We had a clear vision on where we wanted to take this album and the ways we wanted to grow and found the best way to execute it was by keeping it all in house again.
As a band you seem to be really connected to your fans. How does it feel to see your fan-base grow as more and more people connect with your music?
Zach: It’s incredible to see new faces at our shows and comforting to see the old ones. It’s a reminder that we are doing something right by keeping our long-time fans satisfied and not alienating them while expanding on the flor world and reaching new people. We recognise that the fans are what it’s all about and we will keep that in the forefront of our mind as we grow.
Is there anywhere in the world that you would like to visit that you haven’t been able to see on tour yet?
Zach: New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, Australia. Anywhere! Everywhere! We want to experience it all and any new place is exciting to us.
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned since you began playing music?
Zach: It’s not a competition, it’s a community. If you can remember that then your art will have more meaning and more impact.
With the end of the decade swiftly approaching, what do you want to achieve with flor over the next ten years?
Zach: We want to continue to inspire, continue to grow, and continue to be the band people can turn to whenever they need it. If we can do that much then we will have accomplished our goal.
Don’t miss your chance to see flor on their headline tour across the US in the new year, see where the band are playing and get your tickets here. If you can’t make it this time around, make sure to check out the band’s latest album, ‘ley lines’, below and get ready for when they next make a stop in your area.