At the end of 2020, Providence-based multi-instrumentalist Austin Bullock dropped Don’t Wake Me Up, a satisfying collection of eight songs with wide-ranging influences. A prolific writer, Bullock put out three albums in 2020, all following the theme of “8 hours labor, 8 hours recreation, 8 hours rest” according to his Bandcamp page.
Though it was hard to decipher any kind of throughline, all the songs feature smart arranging and superb guitar playing. He mixes a lot into the stew here, and all the parts are well fleshed out. “Circus Freak” has a kind of dancy Franz Ferdinand vibe, and “How Could You” is a breezy folk tune.
Some of the songs off Don’t Wake Me Up make that warbly, Mac Demarco guitar tone the star of the show, like the heavy groover “Deflated.” The leadoff “(I Don’t Want) Another” has the sunny, laid-back tones of Rayland Baxter. The interlocked guitars in “Evaporate” are straight-up Strokes.
The best moment comes when Bullock moves away from the modern indie influences completely in the bluesy, psych-infused ”Talk the Talk.” The song’s repetitive, hypnotic riff is something my brain hasn’t been able to shake.
There is a homespun basement vibe — Bullock appears to play all the instruments — that is definitely cool, but these songs would really rip with a full band. The act performs as a duo with Lauren Boucher on drums, and hopefully will be playing live at a venue near you soon.
Groovy and freaky, with a bumblebee sounding riff and a very organic garage sound, like in a rehearsal room. Good melodies and a fresh dynamic that keeps the attention. “Circus Freak” by Austin Bullock is positioned in a very personal category and leaves you wanting to hear more stuff. An ideal track to start Friday night with friends and a good reserve of beers.
Austin Bullock, a promising DIY musician hailing from Providence, Rhode Island, is in the midst of developing his most ambitious work to date. His latest album, Jubilate, was released last July and is the second release in a trilogy of albums dropped within the year. The third is slated to come out later this fall.
Each of the three albums, according to Bullock, represents the three parts of a balanced, stereotypical American work day: eight hours labor, eight hours recreation, eight hours rest. As Jubilate symbolizes a period of recreation, stand-out tune “Doughy” fits in the tracklist perfectly with its carefree vibe.
The song dabbles in psych-rock while employing a reggae-esque beat that gives the whole thing a “laid-back” kind of feel. The bright guitar fills stand out in the reverb-soaked production, reminiscent of optimistic sunbeams bursting through on a cloudy day.
On “Doughy”, Bullock succeeds at capturing the fluidity and flexibility of life, both lyrically and instrumentally. Pushing against genre boundaries and, symbolically, against the notion that life is rigid and confining. It’s definitely a pick-me-up, to say the least.
Described by the artist as “a hopeful song about fighting back against forces that keep you down,” “Kings and Cattle” is the latest from Austin Bullock. Impressing earlier this year with the track “Part of Me
,” the Providence, Rhode Island-based artist shows a more spacious, contemplative sound here — with a calming psych-tinged quality. The vocal backing reflection at 01:20, followed by a spirited organ push, makes for a nice sequence of events; the verses throughout achieve a similarly hypnotic charm. “Kings And Cattle” is another winner from Bullock.
I have to preface this by saying that I was listening to a lot of corporate rock before hearing this song. Austin Bullock (terrific terrible name) came on like a dazed and confused teen, walking while blind drunk and stumbling into the furniture. Naturally, I had more affinity for this sound than for the corporate rock that had plagued my ears in hours prior. Cleaning Lady sounds like a terrific lost 60s gem, made by a singer-songwriter boozing out in Switzerland against the advice of his management.
Here’s a nice upbeat slice of alternative rock from Austin Bullock that comes off somewhere between 311, and quality 90s indie bands like Embrace.
Rhode Island may be small, but it is big with talent, and that is evident in artists such as Austin Bullock
, who detonates inside your speakers with sick bravado. The Providence resident recently released Wasted 8, an album that pays tribute to garage rock and all its gritty complexities and simplicities. Tracks like “Don’t Be Like That” are easy-going in the verses, featuring cheery acoustic guitar strums that slowly disappear into the distortion that permeates the choruses. “Halo” features a slow-slithering bassline underneath hot vocals and psych-tinged ambiances that anesthetize away worries. “Not for Sale” accelerates into a beautiful mix of ‘70s punk and early ‘00s revival: past meets present and it rocks. The record has fight in it and that we need right now indeed; stream “Not for Sale” below for a trip well worth the time. – Rene Cobar
Compared to his previous albums, this is a weird(er) version of Rhode Island based Austin Bullock, but ultimately way more compelling.
The following announcement accompanies the release on Bandcamp:
Wasted 8 is the first of 3 albums being released in 2020. These 3 albums fit the theme of “8 hours labor, 8 hours recreation, 8 hours rest.” Each album has 8 songs, each symbolizing an hour of the day, adding up to 24 total songs to symbolize the 24 hours in a day.
Certainly an ambitious project, the above excerpt succinctly explains the sort of post-apocalytic/restorative sound that typifies the album’s juxtaposition of power-pop / fuzz and post-punk. Perhaps beneath these vague reference point there are two primary stylistics that dominate.
Initially, the hyperkineticism of Sound The Alarm (see below), Interpretation and Halo course isolated, metronomic jangled riffs, behind psychedelia that just about stop short of where the dangerous territory of post rock begins. The tracks are sparse, creating an atmosphere that force deliberation about aural soundscapes that are largely left to the readers interpretation.
If the above tracks often allow post-punk atmospheres to dominate the more melodic psyche inflections, the melodies in tracks such as Don’t Be Like That (see below), Waste Case, Not For Sale allow Bullock’s propensity for heavily fuzzed power-pop to accentuate his ability to step into melodic ear-worm territory.
As always with Bullock, it is the sort of power-pop that will never really get your Auntie and Uncles ‘bopping’ at familiy weddings, but more crucially, the sort that adds the modernity of ‘leftfield’, to a sound that might just about keep the genre alive in these times of perpetual plagiarism.
Multi release projects like this can sometimes implode in a sense of the artist’s own ‘concept’. However, if the remaining two albums can simultaneously stay the right side of bizarre and just the other side of traditional power-pop, then this act is going to be a ‘must follow’ in 2020.
Guitar-pop, tinged with psyche and fuzz, whilst always being able to bounce out a tune with pop-rock melodies. Austin Bullock is just about the best new version of yesterday’s sound around right now.
(Translated from Spanish) Singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer, the American Austin Bullock has been perfecting his DIY rock proposal both on stage and in his home studio since 2018, in addition to being co-founder and guitarist of the band Binge Magick. In 2020 the artist acts as a duo with Lauren Boucher on drums and they have announced three albums over the course of the year. The first of them, Wasted 8
(2020), has just been released with songs as appetizing as Don’t Be Like That, a song that combines country and grunge with a playful lyric, contagious guitar riffs, and a spacey atmosphere. An interesting proposal full of talent…
(Translated from French) We really liked the very DIY sound and the garage band style. The arrangements are efficient and dry, the title comes fairly quickly in mind!
The group promises 3 albums in 2020, let’s hope they manage to produce as much and that these releases will be received with sympathy.
‘Part of Me’ is the single from Austin Bullock’s new album ‘Wasted 8’ (out now). And the co-founder and guitarist of the band Binge Magick, does his solo thing with this project of soaring energies and lyrics that exude love, for love’s sake.
In 2020, Austin announced that he will be releasing 3 albums over the course of the year, the first of which is titled Wasted 8 and is scheduled for release on March 6, 2020. The 2nd and 3rd albums will be released later this year.
Whoa. Ambition. But we think that’s what Austin’s all about: Gumption by the fistful.
With Lauren Boucher on drums in this project, Austin thrills with tantalizing psyche tinged indie, asking the right questions that we all like to ask of, in private.
The newest release from Austin Bullock brings authentic vocals and blazing guitars riffs, glowing bright against a smooth drum beat. FFO: Black Keys
Attention retro fans! The new single of the American’s upcoming album uses scratchy guitars and wobbles somewhere between the 60s and 90s Britrock. Sounds indecisive at first, but it really fits quite well. Especially the rousing guitars, which are supported by a subtle bass. Wonderful!
With a melodic garage-rock sound, “Part Of Me” comes via Austin Bullock, an artist Providence, Rhode Island. From Bullock’s forthcoming album Wasted 8, out on March 6th, “Part Of Me” wastes no time — with a thickly hypnotic bass line, distorted guitars, and steady percussion emerging right away. The aesthetic reminds fondly of Cloud Nothings
. The chorus reveals anthemic replay value, with shades of Anthony Kiedis in the vocal tone. “Part Of Me” is a loose, fun rocker that has me anticipating Wasted 8.
Regarding the track, Bullock says: “This song is inspired by the overwhelming feeling of falling in love and becoming something more than yourself. Having your plans smashed and being swept away in a new direction, in the best way.”
“AUSTIN BULLOCK released his latest debut solo album ‘Step 1 Explode’ (available now). And off of that album, this little gem of a single named ‘Express Yourself With Dollar Bills’ lives within it. And with this, single, blues, rock, and an undaunted indie vibe is expressed to the fullest. First, listen to the solo. It’s glorious. The right amount of fuzz, tuned to the background of jammy riffs, dictate the face distorting pureness we feel listening to it. We just wanted more and more, and Austin’s going to make a mark in the industry. Refreshing and delightful, his EP is fabulous as well. Watch out world.”
“Look at his big, happy indie rock shaped face? How could you not like that chap? Luckily, his music matches his pictorial enthusiasm. We’ve got two ones streaming here from Austin Bullock’s upcoming debut record Step 1 Explode. First up is ‘Never Mind’. A jaunty, jangly, and up beat number, the song shows Bullock’s knack for a melody and subtle production.
Following on from that is ‘Naive’. A fuzzier proposition, the track delves into a more foreboding atmosphere with nods to post punk and alt rock. It’s a bit of a jam.”