Thursday, August 23, 2012

2012 Artist Preview: Bully in the Hallway

It's hard asking questions of your own band, and in person it can be bizarre (especially because as a band, we all spend on average 8-10 hours per week together...). However, thanks to the context and formality of written emails, we (and I...) get to learn some more about Bully in the Hallway's latest album, a recent trip and upcoming plans. We're excited to play the pig roast again!

Check out the interview with lead singer Simon as well as the track "Golden Bones" off of Bully in the Hallway's latest release, Crooks and their Castles.

Can you tell me about how "Crooks and their Castles" was made? Any thoughts behind what songs were picked, how they were recorded and how the artwork came about? 

CATC is a collection of songs written from 2007-2011... We recorded it at the Phantom Manor with our mentor Mike Lust in the Spring/Summer of 2011. As for the song selection, we wanted to espouse our love of harmonies, big rhythms, assailing guitars, and infectious hooks blanketed with invigorating verses. The songs cover a wide variety of topics from the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill of 2010 (Blatant Persuasion), chasing sleep while building resumes (If I can't have my cake and eat it to...), the redundancy and hypocrisy of the American "Dream" (Crooks), friends growing apart (Golden Bones), Lincoln Park trixies (Stick-Up Chicks), institutions that claim to beset value through constructs (Life is Money), the walk of shame (Walk of Shame), wants vs. needs (Advice), work (9to5er), significant others (Magnanimous Corpses), women wearing tights (Tight Pantz), and being enamored with someone (You Got Me!).

The artwork came from a shoot with our long time photographer and good friend Justin Watson James. For me it speaks to the walls we imagine in front of us.

This was your first year really leaving the Tri State Area with a trip down to SXSW. What were your thoughts about the trip? Highlights? Lowlights?

We love Austin, hence the Pig Roast. We had so much fun and met so many wonderful bands/people. Also, it was a chance for us to bond with some of our home town brethren i.e. Mannequin Men, Heavy Times, Secret Colours, and so forth. SXSW is a must for young bands and a great opportunity to get road tested.

I think the highlights for me, personally, were our performances, seeing the Mannequin Men play a million shows and getting drunk with em, kicking it with our good friend Chris Ciesiel who came from KC to hang with us, all the abandon cars on the side of the highways, and tacos.

As for low lights... 19hr drives, hitting a bail of hay on the highway in Arkansas, but in all reality these were still highlights... hahaha!!

It's been 8 months since "Crooks and their Castles" was released. What's new with the band? Are you writing new music? What do you plan to do in Chicago's winter?

We have been preparing our new record... we have about 3 or 4 songs. One of which we will be playing on Saturday. It's called "Turncoats" and is about consumerism. We will continue writing in October after we play our buddy Ciesiel's wedding with the idea of recording in the Winter for a spring release. Maybe an EP release for SXSW with the LP coming out in April/May.

Bully in the Hallway - Golden Bones by RockPigRoastChi

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