Black Happy Day
In the Garden of Ghostflowers

welcome, green-fingered audiophiles, to another specialized botanic collection presented to the Stylus nurseries. These plants and flowers have been carefully bred and nurtured by the hands of Tara Vanflower (you may recall her previous work blossoming in the sometimes chilly climates of Lycia) and Timothy Renner; a collaboration which has left a distinctive impression upon the final design. As you will see, many of the blooms are edged by Renner’s harsher tones, providing contrast to the softer, floating textures expressed by Ms. Vanflower. Allow us to introduce some highlights from the bouquet.

The Leaves of Life
Leafus Invigerasis
The theme of Black Happy Day’s presentation is established early with these minimal stems. Pruned of everything but Vanflower’s plaintively reverberating vocals, shadowed by the deeper timbre of Renner, this piece confirms that there will be no fireworks of color or over-elaborate petals on show. Just the elongated sounds of a ghostly duet accompanied by little, if any, instrumentation.

Coitus Maximus
Plucked from the depths of the ocean, “Whore” belies its rather ungracious title with a shimmering undulation engrained through years of evolution beneath the waves. In light breezes, this mysterious bud will gently wave and bend as it emits intermittent sonic pulses. Previously used to attract prey, these aural complexities have been harnessed in their raw state via selective breeding and can now be heard to resonate with shades of intergalactic radio communication when conditions are right.

Of the Wind and Loneliness
Fairgroundum Desertoris
Posies picked at great personal risk from the paddocks behind a haunted circus, patrolled at night by skeletal zebras ridden by faceless clowns. When the rain falls upon these blighted blossoms, their stamen elicit a sequentially melodic sound, reminiscent of an eerie xylophone. At first it feels oddly beautiful, until the slow realisation dawns that it is the recorded echo of a zombie elephant’s ribcage.

How Many Hours ‘til the Spider’s Work Is Done?
Centerpiesis Epicatus
If allowed to thrive, this mighty vine will creep to a space-engulfing size. Though it may seem as if the bewitching tendrils threaten to overwhelm the rest of your botany, when controlled and placed in context with similar greenery they are a slow-crawling treat. The tiny flowers will attract all manner of busy insects, whose low, persistent droning will contribute to the ambience of your garden. As well as to the diet of the silvery spiders who spin delicate, harmonious webs between the foliage.

Hand in Hand
Infractus Pectus Pectoris
Gentle, yet vibrant reminder of your latest doomed romance. Relive those walks along the beach with the sand-flecked tips and experience communication breakdown all over again as the ephemeral petals reflect how rapidly your time together ran out. You’ll marvel at how upbeat the playfully jaunty stems and classic folksy feel of these blooms manage to make you feel.

Whether you’re looking to increase the atmosphere of a moon-bathed sundial or provide authentic decoration for the flowerboxes in a fifteenth century renaissance palace, this collection should contain something to please you. All specimens are best experienced during the twilight hours, waiting by torchlight in case of visitation by fairy-folk or other such supernatural creatures—inevitably lured closer by an aura of mystique. Frailly luxurious and ancient as faded velvet, these Ghostflowers sprout from the seeds of restrained splendor.

Reviewed by: Peter Parrish
Reviewed on: 2006-09-20
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