Thursday, June 15, 2006

Meet Bull City

Bull City: "Bum Leg" and "Game" (demos)
The Balance: "On A Wheel" and "Proof" (from The Balance 2004)

Last month, I noted that the Balance was laying low and recording new songs. Turns out, they were really breaking up -- Matt McCaughan being busy with Portastatic and other projects and multi-instrumentalist Wes Phillips returning to Iowa. (Wes contributed to a number of fine Triangle bands, so perhaps he'll make his way back here sometime.) But Jim Brantley is carrying on under a new name, Bull City, which sees him teaming up with drummer Scott Carle (who used to play with Dillon Fence, among others), Boss Bowers on bass, and "hot young ‘un guitar slinger" John Kurtz.

When I first came across the Bull City MySpace page, it only had one song: "Bum Leg", an odd little electronic composition. That turns out to be more of a goof than anything that Bull City will actually sound like, according to Jim. Given that he's still the primary songwriter, I have to think that it will sound similar to the Balance -- and he's added "Game" to the MySpace site, which I previously posted as a Balance demo. I really enjoyed the Balance's indie/power pop blend ("On A Wheel" is a good example), so I'd be happy to see a continuation of that. On the other hand, Jim promises both more of a classic rock/big guitars sound and more country in Bull City. I don't know if that means a split personality album or a Drive-By Truckers southern rock sound or what -- the demos that Jim shared with me were one apiece of each style. Revisiting the Balance's CD, it occurs to me that "Proof" manages to combine elements of both, with dobro nipping around the edges of the verses leading into some crashing guitar crescendos. The full band is slated to record demos early next month, and I'll be looking forward to seeing what they come up with.

Bull City has a pretty full slate of shows in the next few weeks to tune up for their session, and they're playing on Saturday at Kings in Raleigh. Also on the bill are Electric Sunshine, a new band led by Eddie Taylor of the Loaners -- neither of whichI know anything about -- and Big City Reverie, a Raleigh trio with a big guitar sound (the Indy says, "heart-on-the-line, wheels-on-fire Raleigh rock trio, sporting an androgenic education via Cheap Trick and Guns N' Roses like an old T-shirt") that ought to sit well alongside Bull City. They have a number of songs to listen to here and here. (The downloads are low bitrate, so just listen on line. I recommend "Under Control" and "Nightmares for You").

Bonus Song!
Dillon Fence: "Daylight" (from Rosemary 1992) Ahh, college...


At 7:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bull City rocks!

At 4:11 PM, Blogger Matt said...

Dillon Fence!
ah, college....damn straight

At 11:27 PM, Blogger Tessa said...

Hey there! Noticed you linked Drive A Faster Car a few back and wanted to say thanks and that I've returned the linkage. Nice blog! - Tessa

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