The Flatmates were formed in 1985 in Bristol, UK, in the white heat of what has become known to historians as the ‘C86 movement’ or ‘The Scene In-Between’. Their simple aim was to make classic pop tunes which combine the cool and charm of The Ramones and The Ronettes. In the late 1980s they released five singles on guitarist Martin Whitehead’s Subway Organization label, all of which dented the UK indie charts of the day, two of them also reaching the hallowed ground of DJ John Peel’s annual listeners’ chart the Festive 50.
While contemporaries went on to find a degree of fame and fortune on major labels, The Flatmates stayed true to their DIY roots. They never record the classic album they knew was in them back then, although two collections of Flatmates material were released, Love and Death (1989) and Potpourri (Hits, Mixes and Demos ’85 – ’89 (2005).
In 2013 the band returned with a new line-up (including Swedish singer Lisa Bouvier), a new single (‘You Held My Heart’ on the Archdeacon Of Pop label), and a select run of UK gigs. This was followed in 2015 by a single on Italian label Astro Girl, featuring cover versions of songs by Prince and Cinerama, as well as a reissue of the Potpourri compilation, now available for the first time on (pink! double!) vinyl, issued by Cherry Red / Optic Nerve.
Since then they have continued to play live, including the Indie Daze all-dayer in London; The At The Edge Of The Sea festival in Brighton; The Indie Tracks festival in Derbyshire; Berlin Popfest; their first French tour; and also their first US tour, including a headline slot at NYC Popfest.
Live they have gone from strength to strength, a five-piece band with an onstage energy few can match, and while the classic tunes are still present and correct, they are matched by a clutch of potential new hits, material which the band have recorded for a new album, officially their debut, which will be released in 2018.