Turn it up loud and embrace the sound of garage rock for the sound of Manchester’s Hey Bulldog. The band have honed a deliciously catchy, guitar-led rock sound over the last few years, with the latest offering being last month’s single California.
The track opens up with drums then a chugging bassline with reverby guitars soon kicking into a cool high-pitched lick. That continues under a verse of echoey vocals that builds up to a chorus of vocals answered by diving guitars that you can’t help but bob your head along to. The dreaminess briefly gives way to a blitzing guitar solo that feeds into a final blast of the chorus. Check it out below:
This is a band that’s worth getting excited about, as evidenced by the excellent Divide and Conquer, which drops into a section of booming guitars under raw vocals then eventually builds up to a funky wah-solo.
GR: Who are Hey Bulldog? And where are you from?
HB: “We’re Rob (Guitar/vocals), Matt (Bass) and Ben (Drums), we’re from Manchester.”
GR: You just released California. What should people be expecting from the song? What inspired you to write it?
HB: “It’s a fuzzy bass-driven 3-minute garage rock tune, It was inspired by the underground Californian garage rock scene and people like Rex Thompson, the bass player from The Summer Hits.
GR: How would you describe the Hey Bulldog sound to people that haven’t listened to you yet?
HB: “It’s fundamentally three-piece guitar, bass and drums garage rock, most of are tracks are riff-based, whether that’s a 3-minute garage rock track or a synth-laden 7-minute post-rock track.
GR: What influences you to write music? Any key themes or topics that you write about?
HB: “Lyrically I’d say there’s almost a 50/50 split with our tracks being either personal emotional and experience based or more politically and social themed lyrics. We followed a love and desire song like Under My Spell with something like Divide & Conquer for example.”
GR: Which bands/musicians are/have been your strongest musical influences?
HB: “Obviously because of the name The Beatles are the benchmark, but I guess we probably feel more closely aligned to bands like the Jimi Hendrix Experience, Neil Young, Crazy Horse and Led Zeppelin that could jam together, we’re massively influenced by more modern acts like Radiohead, LCD Soundsystem and The National too. Just anybody with an ear for melody and a decent riff that is always trying to progress musically.”
GR: What have you got coming up through the rest of 2019? New music, new gigs, recording etc…?
HB: “We’ve got a couple of festivals still to play Kendal Calling and Cotton Clouds this summer, then we have a headline show at Jimmy’s in Manchester on 14 September to launch our next single. That will be our first two track 7-inch vinyl single, so we’ll be promoting that with more live dates too whilst working on putting an album together to release this winter.” More info on their upcoming gigs is here.
GR: Anything else you’d like people to know about you/your music?
HB: “If you like what you hear come and see us live as we feel that’s where we really thrive as a band and where we really have something unique to offer. We have a couple of live tracks like No Future (Part II) and Losing My Way that are different every time we play them.”