Posts Tagged ‘Feels Like’

Bully is putting out pretty much the only new rock album I care about this year. The Nashville band is fronted by Alicia Bognanno, a girl who is just as fearless when she’s screaming about her period over seething guitars as when she’s producing the group’s entire album new album “Feels Like”. There’s just something about the women that orchestrate their music to that level of detail, and with this amount of ferocity, that is completely exhilarating where so much of modern rock falters. “Too Tough” is a blood-curdling evisceration of male weakness. It flips the myth of masculinity’s tough-as-nails exterior over and exposes the toxic, cowardly underbelly. But you could never accuse Bognanno of sounding mad per se as she wails “You’re trying to wear me down.” Instead, she sounds like the rest of the incredibly tough women I know: tired of it. So she took up her guitar and wrote a song about that exhaustion. It courses with enough crackling power to buoy the rest of us. Later this month, Nashville rock group Bully will release one of the most accomplished debut albums of the year with “Feels Like”, a collection of alt-rock angst and thrillingly aggressive lyrics. “Too Tough” is one of the album’s most intense pleasures — and Billboard is giving it to you first. Listen to “Too Tough” below: Like the previously released track “Trying,” “Too Tough” finds Bully leader Alicia Bognanno oscillating between defeated warbles and enraged cries over a collection of chugging guitars. Bognanno also serves as Bully’s producer and engineer, and has given Feels Like a gritty sound to match her gleefully unhinged vocal performances.

“‘Too Tough’ was recorded at Electrical Audio,” says Bognanno of the Chicago studio owned by Steve Albini, “and is about people who don’t have the nerve to live up to mistakes they’ve made.”

“Feels Like” is due out June 23rd on Startime International/Columbia, and Bully has been on the road supporting Best Coast‘s latest tour,

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Bully Feels Like

The members of Nashville’s slacker rock group Bully could not be more emotionally detached and dismissive than they are in a new video for the song “Too Tough.” Fronted by singer Alicia Bognanno, the band members plod their way through the song in a nondescript suburban living room, completely distracted and disinterested in their own performance. Drummer Stewart Copeland intermittently grows bored and stops playing all together.

The whole scene oozes sarcasm. “Calling me but you can’t come clean,” sings Bognanno. “I had to hear it from family, hear it on the answering machine.” Not a lot happens in this world, but it’s oddly captivating to watch, in part for Bognanno’s penetrating gaze into the camera.

“Ever since the record has come out,” Bognanno tells us via email, “I am constantly being asked about the intensity and honesty of the lyrics and whether or not I regret putting them out there. This video is a friendly reminder that, yes, obviously we care, but we don’t need to be taken so seriously 100% of the time.”

“Too Tough” is from Bully’s debut full-length, Feels Like, released earlier this year on Columbia Records.

Alicia Bognanno performed the realest/rawest video of the year. “I Remember” is a blistering, intensely emotional missive, and even though Alicia’s probably performed this song 1000 times at this point, it looks like the sentiment expressed here hits a nerve every time. She holds nothing back, and by the time she’s done it feels like pure, sweet catharsis. Bully’s debut full-length “Feels Like” came out June 23rd. Of all the albums released this year, Feels Like is one of the most personal, honest and raw; it finds singer Alicia Bognanno laying herself emotionally bare in all arenas of her life, from a caustic past (or doomed present) relationship lamented on “I Remember,” the album’s lead single that hit pretty much everyone like a smack in the face when it dropped earlier this year, to reming a friend that he or she is better than their own bullies on “Six,” to pondering the possibilities of the future on “Milkman”.

The album is evidence of how strong Nashville’s oft-overlooked rock and roll scene really is, and makes a strong case for the resurgence of electric guitars in a city generally associated with pedal steel, fiddles and, more recently, the computer generated sounds that dominate modern country. Each song teems with unrestrained energy that doesn’t let up for a moment, and Bognanno’s rough-around-the-edges vocals push the tracks even further. If you’re not yet familiar with Bully, get familiar, because Bognanno and co. could be headed straight to the top.

BULLY – ” Trying “

Posted: October 22, 2015 in MUSIC
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Debut album ‘Feels Like’ out June 23rd 2015, frontperson and bandleader  Alicia Bognanno doesn’t just sing and play guitar for this Nashville band. She also writes all the songs and records and engineers them; she taped their triumphant debut Feels Like at Steve Albini’s Electrical Audio studio, where she was once an intern. So it’s fitting that Bognanno’s voice is what defines this band. It’s a huge, ragged, vulnerable roar, the type of thing that conveys complicated things about being young and fucked-up and helps elevate her band’s revved-up fuzz-rock above just about all their ’90s-indie-rocking peers.