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McCully/Mackay announce new single - Flowers in the Dirt

Following the release of their debut album, 2020's The Unicorns Are Screaming, Cape Town prog-rock duo McCully/Mackay are proud to announce their new single Flowers in the Dirt

With this latest release, veteran musicians and long-time collaborators Tully McCully and Gordon Mackay continue to explore and develop their sound. The 70s/80s progressive influences that coloured their debut album are less pronounced, but while Flowers expands into more commercial territory it still retains what have become the hallmarks of the duo’s work: a high level of musicality, analogue instruments and sounds, intricate sonic layering and contemplative lyrics focusing on humanity and our place in the world.

McCully/Mackay or Photos (c) Laura McCullagh & Laverne Mackay

“I was walking on Blouberg Beach” says Tully, “and was shocked at how much plastic and rubbish there was everywhere. Then I saw these flowers, just growing there in the middle of it all. They didn’t care that they were surrounded by all this crap, they just did what flowers do, they grew. And I thought that we are like flowers in the dirt. So I had the phrase in my head for quite a while after that, the rest of the lyrics just came through as always as a stream of consciousness.”

Musically Flowers is less sprawling, more constrained and immediate than the band’s previous work. “I wanted to push our creativity working with a melodic loop and core melody, so kept us restricted to just 4 chords as a creative challenge. We wanted to keep it interesting without getting too proggy or feeling too repetitive” says Tully.

“I think the song has probably more commercial appeal than most of the other work we’ve done”, says Gordon, “so I decided not to elaborate too much with the keyboard parts. From the second verse I added this chunky Supertramp-esque Wurlitzer Electric Piano that adds a rather pleasant drive to the song.”

Flowers is also the band’s first duet, with Tully and Gordon both singing together. “Tully told me he wasn’t entirely happy with the way he’d sung it, and so asked me to do the vocals” says Gordon. “The song is quite high and when I’d finished, I wasn’t happy with my vocals either! But by combining both of us singing in harmony it works really well.”

The result is a powerful rock anthem about resilience, perseverance and triumph over adversity. A reminder that you are stronger than you think and to, as the saying goes, “bloom where you are planted”.

Flowers in the Dirt will be available on all digital platforms. McCully/Mackay will release their second album in early 2022.

See the music video here:

Mountain Records 2022


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