Blues combined with rock. This is how I’d describe Bailiff. Vocals for Remise are more suited to rock whereas musical instruments used bring out a blues effect. “Red Balloon”, Bailiff’s first album has a more blues sound than “Remise” which relies heavier on rock. This is my opinion. It may not be fact.
Josh Siegel left college to move home and form the band known as Bailiff. Upon his arrival to his home in Chicago Siegel crossed paths with drummer, Ren Mathew. Here they formulated the master plan to create Bailiff. Both parties possessed a keen interest in blues music. So, after all was said and done, Bailiff was formed.
“Remise” was released in the spring of 2014. In 2012 Owen O’Malley was recruited as bassist. For the next two years the trio would work together writing songs, performing live and eventually moving on to create their second full length studio album. They collaborated with Beau Sorenson (Death Cab for A Cutie) in 2013, borrowing from him his production expertise.
The introductory songs “Lookin’ Away” and “Helicopter” are quite an introduction indeed. Immediately you are hit with a rush of adrenaline as heavy vocals and background music come crashing down on you in “Lookin’ Away”. The build up to vocals in “Lookin’ Away” gives you a taste of what’s to come. Veering towards the end of the song vocals become higher.
Some fantastic guitar playing can be heard in “Helicopter”. The rhythm remains the same throughout the song in it’s entirety. This is my favourite song from Bailiff’s new album. The song portrays “soldiers”, a “helicopter” and “fighting”. One can’t help but surmise it’s a song about the world struggle of war “And the soldiers they shot your helicopter down”.
The rest of the album is softer than the songs previously mentioned. “Shake My Heart Awake” is slower. Vocals are more controlled. The use of drums and guitar are carefully mastered to stay in tune with the songs timeliness. “Head In The Clouds” exemplifies this change in production. From what I can gather there are only the combinations of piano and violin for background noise. “You And I” reverts back somewhat to Bailiff’s introductory songs.
Overall, the significant change in tone makes for an excellent listen. The problem with some of my favourite bands I used to listen to was that they used the same tone over and over for each of their songs. This method sounds comfortable and catchy but can become dull and routine very fast. With Bailiff they’re more versatile. As you become accustomed to one song the next song might be different altogether. A 60’s vibe along with blue’s, rock and American country paints a portrait of Bailiff in my opinion. They show us that opposites on the scale is a possibility of producing great music.
Thanks for reading.
By Nick Fitzgerald.