Album Reviews

Yummy Grunge: Bull In the Whisky Shop- EP Review

Bull in the Whisky Shop, is a shoegaze-noise rock band from Manchester UK, mixing “new-gazing” techniques with a punk attitude. Alternating between vocalists, Emily Carney (guitar), who delivers that extra punch on certain tracks, and James Blake (guitar), who compliments Carney’s voice, and simply can stand alone, they are a great new band on the scene. Completing the five piece delicious noise-fest are David Harrison (guitar), Henry Keck (drums) and Dado Bastien (bass), who complete the band for a full sound.

The alternation between vocals, and layering, is an advantage to this group since the range, and capacities, of each vocalist are different, allowing new combinations of sound and easier to adapt to certain “fuzziness and grunge” of the sound Bull in the Whisky Shop produces. They were formed in the summer of 2014, centralizing on similar ideas and mutual love for making “loud noises,” which leads them to describe themselves as “fuzzy, psychedelic noise-rock goodness with a yummy grungy centre.”

New EP, Self-titled, Bull in the Whisky Shop, is a 4 track compilation that delivers aggressiveness and mellow shoe-gaze demeanor; the perfect embodiment of sound this band strived to deliver. The EP starts off with a track entitled, “Something Right.” This is more of a garage-punk track, with Carney shouting over Blake’s delivery. It’s a noisy track, and I enjoyed the background vocals towards the end of the song, transitioning to the next track, “Lion.” This is one of their well-constructed songs, and I wish this was how they started out the EP, versus “Something Right.” It has a great showcasing of Blake’s voice and the ability to hear the different guitar distortions going on in the song. It still contains the band’s rock approach, but I believe this is a great introductory song to then further dive into the rest of the EP.

“Dedication,” is the next track, and by far this would be my personal favorite from the EP. On this particular track, this is where band perfected the distinction of themselves and the sound they are trying to convey. It has enough attitude without being overbearing, clear layering of the guitars that are well-placed. The bridge and chorus are extremely catchy and this is a great rock-progressive twist on their shoe-gazing love. The drumming holds everything together without letting the song get lost in the different elements of the song.” I’m trying to perfect myself just for you… could you tell me please, or do you really not give a shit?” is the bite to whole song by the 2nd minute while Blake is softening the blow as Carney is sincerely asking.

Closing the whole EP together is the song, “Demur.” This is a very fuzzy track which has a softer side of Carney’s vocal abilities at the beginning of the song, over distorted guitars and Blake shouting. Very heavy on the grunge, when it picks up, and loud drums to match, until Carney’s shouting completes the overall tone of the track. Bull in the Whisky Shop has a lot of talent and ideas swirling in the midst of their attitude. With that said the EP is fulfilling if you’re in the mood for grunge and grime, and I only hope they produce more tracks like “Dedication” in the future.

Overall: 4/5


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