Bullhorn - Revamp The Amp

Bullhorn – Bold As Brass

Brisbane based dynamic new wave brass band, BULLHORN, are an acoustic force of nature with a line up including 7 horn players, 1 drummer and 1 monster MC. If you’ve seen brass bands before forget everything you think you know. Bullhorn are a band like no other. Their sound is born from a mix of hard hitting hip hop, funk, soul, jazz, reggae and dance music. Through the combination of their high energy shows, remarkable musicians and musical arrangements, and the massive charismatic presence of Roman MC, Bullhorn never fails to inspire and get the audiences moving on the dance floor.

Since being established in 2011 Bullhorn have released two albums; Their debut self titled album (2012) and the new ‘Players/Sounds’ album (2014). They’ve also toured regularly throughout Australia performing at many venues and festivals including Australasian World Music Expo (2014), The Falls Music & Arts Fest (2014), Caloundra Music Fest (2014), Mullumbimby Music Fest (2014), Woodford Folk Fest, End Of The Line Fest, Island Vibe, Noosa Jazz Fest, Kuranda Roots, Easter Fest, Redcliffe Fest, Home Fest, Caxton Fest and many others.

Their presence is formidable; armed with trumpets, trombones, saxophones, drums, the mighty sousaphone and the massive presence of Roman MC. As Bullhorn starts to play audiences will experience intoxicating grooves and huge rumbling sounds around them as they descend into a world of rich sonic textures created live, acoustic and real.

I caught up with sousaphone player Steve Buchanan ahead of their Kuranda Roots show this weekend.

TM:- You guys have a formidable lineup of Brass, how did you manage to get that many brass players together?

SB:- Being a horn player I’ve always loved brass bands like Young Blood Brass Band, Hypnotic Brass Ensemble and Rebirth Brass Band. I was keen to put together something like that but instead of playing tradition New Orleans and Balkan music I wanted to play rad modern dance material including hip hop, funk, soul, and drum & bass. I’ve been playing music in Brisbane a long time so knew a lot of great players that’d be keen, and head hunted the other parts I needed from the Con. Bullhorn actually started as an instrumental group. But we loved getting guest MC’s and vocalists up. At Island Vibe 2012 Roman MC jumped up with us, and just blew everyone away. He’s such a monster, charismatic presence on stage and amazing free styler. And the rest is history. Over the last few years we’ve just gone from strength to strength. We love touring and love the festival stage.

TM:- How do you manage the logistics of gigging and touring with such a large lineup?

SB:- Ha! With great difficulty! We’ve got an awesome crew of guys in the band, every tour’s a party and great chill times. But with 9 people in the band it gets hard. It’s all about being super organised and a lot of people doing it for the love cause so much money goes into logistics.

TM:- You have a diverse range of sounds, including Hip Hop, Jazz, Reggae and dance, is that from an organic blend of the different members influences or something you collectively strived for?

SB:- A bit of both. Bullhorn’s sound is really identified by it’s line up rather than genre. We want to explore all music and all genres! As long as people love it and it gets them moving!

TM:- You have released 2 albums to date, is there a 3rd in the works, if so what direction do you see that going in?

SB:- Yeah we just released our second album ‘Players/Sounds’ in September last year. We had an awesome tour! We’re really proud of the new album. As for the next we’ve been doing a lot of writing of the last few months, getting new material together. We’ll be looking at going back into the studio in November and starting work on the new album.

TM:- Here’s a question I like to throw at bands sometimes, can you tell us about your very first show, and how has your sound evolved since then?

SB:- Our first show was at an incredible venue in West End, Brisbane called the Joynt, supporting The Upsteppers. It was actually an amazing show! We had so many beautiful friends that were excited about the new project. It was really awesome to start the band in front of a screaming crowd of beautiful people and friends. Our sound has really developed since then. We started as an instrumental band. Working with Roman has really developed our sound. But saying that, we still play a bunch of the tunes we did on that first show.

TM:- What’s next for Bullhorn after the Kuranda Roots show?

SB:- Just more touring and writing. We’ve got Bello Winter Music Festival, Jungle Love Festival and Collaborations Music Festival coming up as well as heaps of touring through Qld, NSW and VIC over the next few months.

You can get tickets for Kuranda Roots at:- www.rudekatrecords.com and www.ticketlink.com.au

These stores: In Cairns – Happy Herbs, Shi Sha Beads, Fetish 4 Life, Shiva Moon
In Kuranda – Junglist & Jungle Juice Kuranda in the Original Markets, Tantrika, Kuranda Healing opp. Post Office

Todd Macalpine

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