Tag Archives: Western

The Bullitts Won’t Die By Dawn

26 Mar
The theatrical poster from Jeymes Samuel' short film "They Die by Dawn" starring Rosario Dawson and Giancarlo Esposito

The theatrical poster from Jeymes Samuel’ short film “They Die by Dawn” starring Rosario Dawson and Giancarlo Esposito

Do not be surprised when The Bullitts’ debut album They Die By Dawn & Other Short Stories drops this summer and quite literally blows up the music world. The multifaceted baby of the tremendously talented English singer/songwriter/producer/filmmaker Jeymes Samuel, the album will feature a diverse assortment of fresh sounds created by an assortment of musicians and actors (Jay-Z, Jay Electronica, Yasiin Bey, Lucy Liu, Idris Elba and Rosario Dawson).

The question is if the hip/hop world is ready to be shaken. In a mercurial market, The Bullitts’ theatrical flair and mind-bending sounds can radically shape a genre that is expanding to include more indie instrumentation, and, in the case of Samuel (who uses the Bullitts as a moniker) a tribute to Spaghetti Westerns.

Samuel, who has been working with Jay-Z to complete what is sure to be a fascinating soundtrack for the Great Gatsby, implemented Ennio Morricone “Dollars Trilogy” panache to create “They Die By Dawn,” a staggering track that effortlessly combines two seemingly conflicting styles (Western and Hip/Hop).



The song begins with heavy percussion much like Stauss’ “Also sprach Zarathustra” – which generally means something epic is going to happen – and then quickly transitions to a marching acoustic guitar riff and Morricone whistle. The layered instrumentation helps establish the Wild West milieu, and you can envision a brigand like Clint Eastwood slowly riding into the town of San Miguel. As the instruments reach an apex, a narrator speaks a short prayer and the song turns over into rap featuring choppy pieces of the opening in the background. The amalgamation of pure sound is stimulating. I hate to use such simplistic language, but the song is just plain cool, and Samuel deserves some supreme credit for creating a piece like it.



“World Inside Your Rainbow” is another song that will appear on the Bullitts’ release this summer. It’s a subtly powerful track – emotional and contained. The acoustic riff creates a subdued Spanish folk feel but the impassioned lyric and whispery vocal emit power and ardor.

Follow The Bullitts – Website, Facebook, Twitter

Forever Finding Oren Lyons

20 Aug

Oren Lyons

Oren Lyons is a Native American faithkeeper who is widely recognized for his advocacy for indegenous rights. Oren Lyons is also a band, whose nostalgic mix of cinematic Western symphonic rock is a musical “return to the land” and a true pleasure to listen to.

Oren Lyons formed this past January in Silver Lake, California, a Los Angeles neighborhood known for its modernist architecture and hipsters. It combines the work of composer and multi-instrumentalist Gueorgui Linev with guitarist/producer Peter Potyondy, singer Kristianne Bautista, violinist Dannon Rampton, drummer Randy Wagner, and bassist Ian Anderson.

The end result of this combination is an ambient sound that refreshingly transforms the genre of progressive rock into a calm, ethereal, dream-like sequence of delicate string arrangements, soft vocals, and excellent rhythm. “Forever Found,” the band’s debut single, can be streamed on their website. The effort reminds me of Rome, the 2011 album written by Danger Mouse and Italian composer Daniele Luppi, featuring Jack White and Norah Jones. That album featured musicians who recorded spaghetti western soundtracks in the mid-60s. “Forever Found” is cut from the same mold, a track that could have easily found itself on a Western sountrack, and this old-fashioned styling is far from outdated.

The song begins with strings that fall into percussion and an introductory bass line. The bass work in this song is notably good. With a name like Ian Anderson, you almost certainly have to be talented. Kristianne Bautista’s voice can be best described as haunting. It elegantly dances with the music, oscillating with the strings skillfully. The song continues to rise, taking a step up for the second verse, and this leads to exciting string work. The strings are certainly one of the main elements of the song, and they do carry it. I must say though, when the song descends at the 2:40 mark, Peter Potyondy’s guitar introduces a new element to the piece, providing it with an infectious folk-esque riff. The ending is wonderfully constructed. It also provides the listener with a most important conclusion – I want to hear more!

You can explore the band’s Facebook and Soundcloud

%d bloggers like this: