Cúla Búla – Is It?CD Review

Cúla Búla – Is It?
  1. Stick The Kettle On (Intro)
  2. Cuppah Tae
  3. Pirates
  4. Enchantment
  5. Bella Ciao
  6. Fair Little Child
  7. Spanish Misfortune
  8. March Of The Frisbees
  9. Karunga
  10. Follow Me Up To Liddle.

Cúla Búla are a bunch of Galway city based musicians, who play a bit of traditional Irish music, but they are also clearly influenced by rock, punk, Klezmer, gypsy, reggae and ska music, they have this archaic Celtic punk energy culled from years of busking, gigging and playing at festivals.  They aptly describe themselves on their Facebook group bio page, “…It was clear from the start that we worked well together and after just one week of practice in full, we opened a festival. It worked, by the end of the first song we had everyone dancing their socks off…”  Cúla Búla have just released their first full album called Is It?  And I will take you through a track by track review.

Kúla Búla are:

Bisckits Musicman – Guitar, Whistles, Vocals.
Henry Egan – Violin, Fiddle, Guitar. .
Ricky Brown – Guitar, Keys, Fiddle. ..
Luke Longarms – Bass, Occasional Shouting. .
Tadhg Kelly – Drums, Percussion.

Track one Stick the kettle on (Intro) is exactly that, you hear a radio playing traditional music in the background and you hear the kettle boiling, fancy some cha man.  Cuppah Tae (2) This is a chirpy number about the joys of drinking tea.  A tight band with whistle, electric bass, fiddle and guitar rocking it out in a nice uptempo number.  Pirates (3) A rollicking set of self composed jigs that slips into a bit of spacey dub reggae and comes cartwheeling into the jig again, spacey Celtic rock, a nice combination.  Enchantment (4) This a slow moody reflective piece that starts with some lovely picking on the guitar, building when an accordion (played by Luca Verga) adds to the sound giving it an almost Eastern and Parisian feel in parts.  The tune picks up tempo into Balkan and Klezmer territory with a ska undertone until it races to a dizzying height and finishes softly again.  Bella Ciao (5) This has a slow jazzy type of intro with lovely strings and sung in Italian, it breaks into an upbeat reggae number in a Balkan Ska style, a build and slow, build and slow track.  Great experimental folk rock.  Fair Little Child (Air) (6) A lovely soft exultant piece of music with fiddle and strings.  Spanish Misfortune (7) This is a set of three jigs, the first Morrison’s is more the pure drop style with just the whistle, fiddle and mandolin, when the tune comes around again a guitar joins in filling up the sound, Banish Misfortune the second jig brings the drums and bass rocking out the second tune and onto the third the Mooncoin Jig where the group has merged into a space rock sound with Celtic overtones kicking proper ass. March of the Frisbees (8) This would be the groups progressive rock piece, with some nice stick work from the drummer Tadhg Kelly on the intro to the track, a proper proggy anthemic march, lovely slow sections with the fiddle building up into a space rock fusion, I also heard some nice funk in this track too.  Karunga (9) Starts off with an Eastern or maybe klezmer inspired shimmering fiddle etching an ambience across the strings, this to me even sounds like Turkish music at the starting and builds into a slow steady rock piece and eventually builds uptempo into the Tamlin Reel, in Cúla Búla fashion this rocks out into a headbanging reel. Follow me up to Liddle (10)  The final track is a punky growly send up of the traditional song Follow me up to Carlow, Bisckit’s comedic inspired rant about the price of drink and beckoning everyone to follow him up to Lidl, culminating in a breakneck speed of punk and crashing out to the sound of sirens.

Yep Cúla Búla can play the oul trad, rock, reggae, gypsy klezmer and psychedelia to a fine charm, get yer hands on the CD or visit the bands Bandcamp webpage to find out where you can buy it or download from there.  If you get a chance watch the lads in action on the streets of Galway when they are out busking or gigging, also watch the odd festival listing you never know where they may spring out.



CB 2
Cúla Búla in the streets of Galway City.



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