Published Apr 04, 2012Following 2010's epic O album, "transatlantic space rock orchestra" Flowers of Hell are back with the new single "Muchomůrky Bílé," their collaboration with Czech dissident musician Ivo Pospíil.
The song, which also comes with its own new music video, has quite the backstory. As the press release explains, "The song 'Muchomůrky Bílé' (Destroying Angel) was penned by the Czech philosopher Egon Bondy (1930-2007) and Mejla Hlavsa (1951-2001), the late musical leader of the Czech underground, best known for his Velvet Underground-inspired group, the Plastic People of the Universe, formed in 1968 as Soviet tanks invaded Prague's streets."
Apparently, Pospíil, who's been in the Czech avant-garde rock scene that began in the late '60s, first recorded "Muchomůrky Bílé" in the 1980s with his group Gará. The PR continues, "Lyrically it's a poem about committing suicide by wandering through the woods eating poisonous mushrooms -- a non-political song like much of the scene's repertoire. Pospíil and his band performed a few gigs a day during the 1989 Velvet Revolution, rallying the crowds to stand up against the regime, always moving on before being caught. 'Muchomůrky Bílé' has gone on to become a modern Czech folk song, being sung around campfires and at the funerals of dissidents."
Also, Flowers of Hell main man Greg Jarvis had this to say about their recent cover tune, "I lived in Prague during the country's transformation under Havel in the '90s, and for me the Velvet Underground influence in our music very much comes via the old Czech dissident scene. I was thrilled when Ivo agreed to sing 'Muchomůrky' with us after a mutual Czech friend, Ivan Kral from the Patti Smith Group, helped us reconnect. Ivo had the great idea to duet it with a young Czech singer, Tamara Kubová."
The Flowers of Hell's fourth studio album, which will be called Odes, is reportedly due out in late May on Optical Sounds. We're assuming "Muchomůrky Bílé" will be included.