weekly updated blog for Oi! – punk – ska – reggae
Bull Brigade is an Italian band combining hardcore influences and Oi!-music. In 2008 the band released their debute record. Meanwhile the band had a few line-up changes and is slowly working on new songs. All questions are answered by Federico (bass).
January 2011 – band website
I just read at your myspace you won’t do any shows in 2011. Is it lack of inspiration or is it too difficult to combine the band with work and families?
Well, this decision is taken just for two reasons strictly connected to our present lives, as individuals and as a band; The first reason is that there is a “baby-bull brigade” arriving in this world very soon, so we will let the future father do his job at the beginning. That’s good. The second reason is about writing new songs for an album, and we want to do it… well. We only concentrate in something new so if we don’t have concerts to prepare, we stay in this situation. And I think that combining the band with work or families (or whatever) is a choice: you choose which things have the priority, and you act. This is not a rule, all the people working have problems when they ask for days, but often you can organize your time. Once a friend says to me “hardcore is when you come back home after your 8 hours and instead of sitting and doing nothing, you take the guitar and play”. Some people call it dedication.
Your debute is out for a few years now, you probably had some feedback on it. Hhow did people judged the album?
Ok. I think I can say that many reactions were and are good. At a local level, in the beginning everybody expected a lot, because the members and the bands that give birth to Bull Brigade were well known (Banda del Rione – one of the best Oi bands from Italy of that time – and Bad Dog Boogie, punk r’n’r). I’m not in the band from the beginning – and I was one of those from Torino waiting for the first album or a gig. And every gig was a great gig. People like the album because it’s well played and the lyrics are original (this last aspect of course is more real in our beloved country), even if they reflect and speak about real life with sincerity.
The debute dates from 2008. When can we expect a follow up?
As I told you, we are working on new songs. We have already four, and we do them live (and let’s say, some are almost ‘old’… we gotta move fast!!!) but we really want to try the best in our possibilities, if we choose to do a new cd, it would be smart from us to give everything to it with heart, balls…and some brain: we are doing it and Eugenio and Steve, original voice and drums, are very exigent…
If i understood well, the band has new members on bass and guitar. How did these line up changes influenced the band?
The new members arrived in the band at the same time. On the guitar we have Paolino; he played in Los Fastidios for several years and he has taken live experience to the band, I guess. He also loves Social Distortion and so he gives to the songs that particular sign. On the bass there’s me (Federico). I also play bass in S-Contro, an antifascist Oi! Core band from Torino.
Paul, it is hard for me to say how I or we influenced the band: on the musical side – except for the new songs – Paolo and I play the songs in the way the already were recorded. Wwe like them. We play with passion so we must wait some time to speak about this. On the human side: I drink and I drive and I donate the spirit of party to the other boys in the band… even if they don’t need it!
You recorded a song for an Oppressed tribute CD. Compared to your debute this contribution sounds more punk and less Oi!-core oriented. Is this what we can expect from future recordings as well?
I think it’s possible, but my opinion is that for a cover-song, a lot depends on the sound, (I know it’s obvious…) and I was not very satisfied with that recording, so… I don’t think that this comparison fits very well …we will see! I mean, if the structure of the song remains the same, if you don’t change much, you can’t do so much: you must play well, but after this I feel the charateristics of the band (voice, attitude).
Some bands have a sound that is very very known, you can recognize it immediately: For example, Oxymoron – Bad CoProject: they have their own personal sound and they take it live, it’s really good. I hope I was clear. Last thing, I agree that our cover of Ultra-violence is punk, but I do not agree that Bull Brigade are Oi!-Core.
As person you seem to have you’re own political views, yet as band you remain strictly unpolitical. Why this decision?
Surely we are not army soldiers with no freedom of thinking, we have our own political views: but more sure is that we condemn all acts of fascism and intolerance against ‘the different’, in anyway they are. And consequently we never go out to have a beer or anything with the nazi-scum or with the stupid a-politics who – at the contrary – hang out with them. We have some kind of commitment in some situations, we can participate or promote a benefit gig for people in jail or in trouble…etcetera. As a band – I understand what you are saying – we are proud of having played in the antifascist festival in London last year, or to have met Produzenten der Froide, or to have close relationships with some cool people in France, just to make examples. What I want to say is that even if our songs have no political slogans, each one of us has anti-fascist values, we take them to the band and WE make the band.
You’re supporters of Torino FC, Italy is known in Europe for it’s tifo-actions. Are you involved in any supporters activities like these?
We are not involved in any organized group in the terraces. I’d like to say that at the moment – because of state repression on ultras- the organized groups of the terraces decided not to take and show their big flags and banners inside the stadium. If you want to, you must go to police and compromise, so Torino supporters made this radical decision, to stay away from this.
And maybe you can tell us something about the rivalry with Juventus?
First, the team of the city, is TORINO J. Examples: In 2003, we went in 2nd division BUT the same day (4th of May, a very important day for us – from 4th May 1949) 50.000 people made a demonstration called ‘Marcia per l’Orgoglio Granata’ (demo for the pride of our color). The town was painted in Granata. If juv… wins the championship, you will not see the half of that number in town (both clubs come from the same city). Then, a ‘normal’ Torino supporter wears his scarf on mondays, no matter if the team won or not in the weekend. Historically speaking, the wallet of juventus was never empty, ‘mother FIAT’ (big car industry) was kind (the family that owns and founded fiat, owns juve). Instead, it’s almost 20 years that Torino has only thefts as presidents, so our only strength is our glorious history and our supporters, that’s all. It’s a way of life.
Do you have any closing comments?
Paul, thanks for asking us, for the interesting questions and the patience for the answers. Love music, hate juventus!
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