Home > News & Reviews > Bully

Bully - Losing (Album Review)

Wednesday, 01 November 2017 Written by Laura Johnson

It’s been impossible to read about Bully’s career without finding the name Steve Albini propping up the word count somewhere. That’s because singer and guitarist Alicia Bognanno interned at his hallowed Electrical Audio studio in Chicago, learning the analog recording skills used to capture the band’s live energy on ‘Losing’, their second album. With all due respect, though, Albini should soon be a footnote.

Moving on from the lo-fi appeal of ‘Feels Like’, Bully sound bigger, brasher, bolder and subsequently more brilliant than before. Bognanno, who again engineered the LP, has settled into her voice and ricochets between guttural screams and soft harmonies.

The instrumentation has also matured, with layers of guitar melodies creating considered, grunge-fuelled accompaniment alongside an understated rhythm section that allows them to really flourish. There’s no filler.

Opener Feel The Same delves straight into Bognanno’s psyche, detailing her internal battle against indifference: “Cut my hair, I feel the same. Masturbate, I feel the same.” Her blasé delivery mirrors their meaning, just as the vocals’ later escalation reflects frustration at her inability to pull herself out of a slump.

Running, which picks up where ‘Feels Like’ track Trying left off, continues the open dialogue, discussing the difficulty of adjusting to reality when returning home from tour. “I struggle with being back in town,” she sings. “I’ll admit it, I get anxious too, just like you.”

A couple of songs, meanwhile, address Bognanno’s anxiety at her own productivity (or lack of) and also the pressure created when a peer seems to be kicking on in their life. “The truth is unproductivity haunts me, ‘cos I hate feeling useless,” she sings on Guess There. On You Could be Wrong she asks: “I feel like I take forever, just to get a little better. What do I do?”

But there are flickers of light littered throughout. “When I’m alone I stare at your picture, it makes me hopeful,” she sings on Kills To Be Resistant. On the restless Focused she repeats “I am trying to stay focused” until it’s a mantra serving as positive reinforcement.

If there were any doubts surrounding the awkward second album, ‘Losing’ has obliterated them. The record is unapologetically honest and unrelenting in its ferocity.

Bully Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Wed May 30 2018 - LONDON Moth Club

Click here to compare & buy Bully Tickets at Stereoboard.com.

Let Us Know What You Think - Leave A Comment!

Related News

Wed 26 Aug 2020
Bully - SUGAREGG (Album Review)
Thu 13 Aug 2020
Bully Continue To Tease 'SUGAREGG' With New Track Prism
Wed 05 Aug 2020
Bully Post New Single Hours and Hours
< Prev   Next >