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5 Years of Nicky Flowers (The Album)

As of the posting of the blog, my debut LP “Nicky Flowers” turns 5 years old. December 1, 2018. I was 22 years old, living in the south side of Chicago and struggling to make ends meet. I had been releasing EPs at a pretty steady clip but what I really wanted was a larger statement piece—something more personal, something that said who I was. I agonized over this for about 2 years, changing the track listing 100 times, before finally deeming it ready for release. My friend Meys, who plays music as Echo Vessel don’t you know, was so thrilled with it he decided it would be the first release for his new record label neo-detritus, a label I now help run as well.

I was extremely proud of this album, playing it for many friends before release, even holding a big midnight release party in my hotel room at that year’s Midwest Furfest. Having a bunch of furries dance around and vibe with your new album is a great experience, 10/10 would recommend. But nowadays, I can’t bring myself to listen to it anymore. The thought of being in a room full of other people listening to it makes me want to crawl into a hole.


One of the many curses that descend upon you when you become an artist is how much your old work can make you… cringe. That word is a bit overused online but genuinely, the original plan for this post was to listen to track by track and give a short review for each. I couldn’t make it past track 3 without wanting to implode upon myself (Good Intentions, Bad Advice still fucking SLAPS though). It’s not that I think the album sucks or anything; I’m still proud of what I managed to achieve! But with so much time in between then and now, all I can hear are the faults. Or at least the things I would do much differently now at the ripe old age of 27. The other artist’s curse is how you never have any money.

But anyway, to give an example of one of the thing’s I’d do differently—for such a personal album you don’t really hear my voice on it too much? And when you do, it’s slathered in heavy vocoder. I wasn’t very confident in my voice or my lyric-writing abilities and if I could re-do things, I would add more vocals to the whole album. But if I changed anything, it would reflect who I am now, and not who I was when I originally made it. And maybe part of the reason why I can’t listen to it anymore is hearing that younger version of myself and thinking about what could’ve been had my life gone down different paths.

It’s really strange thinking about where I was then versus now. It’s been a bittersweet half-decade. Some things have changed for the better, but other things have… not done that so much. Covid has made me do a complete 180 on my agoraphobia that I’m still struggling with. But I’m living with my girlfriend now, who I had been dating long-distance in 2018. The place we’re living in is much nicer to be trapped inside of than the crumbling brownstone full of far-right lunatics I made the album in. My musical output has not been as steady, but I think I’m a better musician and artist in general.

I hear the growing pains of what would follow in the next 5 years within the 30 minute runtime of my self-titled LP. No wonder it’s hard to listen to! Hopefully, you don’t hear any of that when you listen to it (it’d be kinda weird if you did). I hope you find something personal to you to take from it and that whatever it is is positive. I hope people enjoy listening to it for many more years to come.

And speaking of hope, I’m hoping to make another big personal statement piece in 2024.

Maybe I’ll call it Nicky Flowers 2.

Nicky Flowers - 12/01/23


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