Hull
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Hull

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE

New York City, New York, United States | INDIE
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"Hull, Panthers, Big Business @ Knitting Factory, 6/19/07"

If the members of Pink Floyd were reincarnated as a modern stoner metal band, Hull would surely be that band. It’s hard to imagine a band as heavy as Hull being compared to Pink Floyd, but what draws the comparison is not the band’s music (though they definitely do tip their hat from time to time) but their song structure. Imagine such Floyd epics as “Echoes,” “Dogs,” or “Shine on You Crazy Diamond” redone in stoner metal form — and you’ve got Hull nailed. Headbanging, growling, deliciously downtuned stoner metal from Hull was the highlight of last night’s show at The Knitting Factory.

Hull often start with quiet intros and gradually build the song until everything is so chaotic, so bludgeoning, so brutally destructive, that you can’t believe you’re still listening to the same song; yet each change was so artfully orchestrated that it all falls into place. Then the band brings you back down, back up again, and back down again; each song tells a musical story with a beginning, middle, and end.

Hull’s three guitar attack achieves maximum sludgery, bashing your skull into the wall with a sledgehammer and smearing your brains across the floor, but I actually feel the band underutilized their three axemen. With three guitars I would hope for some nifty twin-lead harmonies, or hey, even a three part harmony — but rarely were any seen. When the band did choose to use the rhythm/lead dynamic, two of the guitarists played heavy stoner riffs while the other noodled on top; a cool idea, but a well-worn one that gets old quickly.

Hull’s drummer added to the crushing force of the band’s sound. He was perfectly in the pocket, and thanks in no small part to the club’s excellent PA and the sound guy’s stellar mixing job, the drums sounded enormous and brutal. The drum mix actually reminded me of Bob Rock’s production on Metallica’s black album, a sound you wouldn’t typically envision in stoner metal, but to these ears a very welcome one that brought the band together and made them sound even tighter.

I’ve just spent four (now five) paragraphs talking about the opening band — this should key you in on how I felt about Panthers and Big Business. Panthers brought a more rock and roll stoner vibe, akin to something like Wolfmother. Big Business were faster, looser stoner metal than Hull — if Lemmy Kilmeister’s children formed a band it would sound like this. I didn’t particularly enjoy either of these bands, but hey, it’s a personal preference; the 300 other folks in attendance sure did seem to have a good time.

The bottom line: Hull is fucking awesome. Check this band out now. Unfortunately the sound was so good last night that their MySpace recordings don’t even come close to capturing the band’s sound — but please do listen anyway for good measure.

-VN - Metalsucks.net


"Hull - Viking Funeral (self-release)"

This is one of the most unique doom outfits I’ve heard lately. To call Brooklyn’s Hull flat-out doom is a huge mislabel in the first place but the band are working with many elements of the genre. They inject a fusion of metal, progressive rock and crusty, His Hero is Gone punk into the veins of their doom breathing creation in order to amass a mutated beast that is like nothing else out there. I believe that there are three guitars at work here. The actual credits are not listed in the packaging or on the website so I’m not exactly sure but the sheer variety of guitar licks on “Viking Funeral” are at least the work of two incredibly deft axe wielders, if not three. The rhythm section is an insurmountable mountain of crashing beats and fluid bass grooves that back up the main guitar action in the best possible manner. The meaty, caveman screams n’ shouts are actually welcome even with the complexity of the music adding a snarling boost of rage to the overall product.

“Viking Funeral” consists of two movements that gel together into one plundering, 16+ minute track that is packed with more changes in sound than your average band could muster on an entire album. The song begins strictly in thrash mode, albeit doomed out thrash with a bit of raging crust. Honestly, the first part of this song has three distinct flavors to it while planting its feet steadfastly into a galloping, metal realm. I hear a huge dose of His Hero is Gone in this first section with downshifts into slower, melodic doom that creates huge atmospheres that you will want to hear over and over again. There is as I stated a straight-up metal punch to all of this as well that gives Hull’s riffs an impact as powerful as a feral blade to the skull. Just before the four minute mark the band delivers a moment of crushing, metallic sludge that is as heavy as anything in the sludge/doom genre.

Not content to just pummel away at your brain the guitars spill forth with a huge melodic volley that lifts the foundation of their sound into the sun-drenched sky with a killer solo that interplays smashingly with the ebb and flow that the other guitars provide simultaneously. This uplifting moment is dashed against the rocks by another slashing dose of snakelike Sabbath sludge that lurches forward with all the subtlety of a police raid on a bunkered down fortress. The storm does calm though with the sampling of blowing wind providing the backdrop for a beautiful passage of clean guitar work. It is here that Hull turns their ship around completely with soaring, introspective songwriting that calls to mind both 70’s classic and progressive rock with a dash of thudding post-doom. The guitars unleash huge leads, solos and licks that will only fail to drop the jaws of those with little or no taste in decent music. The instrumentation is so lush in this part; filled to the brim with timeless melody that shows Hull didn’t just study their influences but expanded on them in a very special way. After the beauty subsides Hull takes us on a journey back through their megaton sludge and crusty, thrash that touches down on an ending peak that is as epic as anything deemed epic out there.

This is a masterful release. I can’t get enough of Hull and the strange world that only they inhabit. This is a band that has the potential to do a lot of great things in the length of their career. As far as I know a full-length is forthcoming in 2008, so we’ll see how they stack up in terms of a longer format. In the meantime I’ll have “Viking Funeral” on constant repeat because anyone even remotely interested in doom or anything I talked about above should check these guys out. This is something far out of the normal boundaries, so check this disc out now because it is limited to a thousand copies! Highly recommended! - Jay Snyder / Hellride Music


"The End Records signs Hull"

The End Records has officially signed Brooklyn's Hull. The group's first release for The End will be a full-length titled "Sole Lord." The effort was tracked by John Cosenza at Meteor Sound in Far Rockaway, NY and will be mastered by Alan Douches (Mastodon). - Lambgoat.com


"Hellride, Sole Lord"

Hull – Sole Lord (The End Records)
By Jay Snyder
September 16, 2009

Move over Nile, the lands of sand have a new pharaoh! I was extremely impressed with Hull’s gargantuan, 16 minute, one song debut Viking Funeral and have been hugely anticipating its LP follow-up Sole Lord. The dazzling Brooklyn quintet managed to take a possible gimmick and turn it into something much more on Viking Funeral. What possible gimmick am I speaking of? I’m talking of the triple guitar angle. Not many have recently attempted such a thing other than Metal Blade’s Beyond the Embrace, who is nothing more than a novelty act in my book.

Such levels of excess don’t usually translate well to albums. Take for example Kylesa. While I have enjoyed their past two efforts, the dual drummer theory really only translates in the live forum, and doesn’t grab me either way on recording. So, Hull have already overcame their biggest obstacle by making the tri-string ballast actually noticeable instead of another half-baked idea that only illustrates excitement on paper. On both Viking Funeral and Sole Lord there are instances where all three axes are easy to pick out, tempering this material with immense bi/tri riffing and winding psychedelic passages. If I had to compare them to other bands, I’d say it melds the emotional weight and aggression of Samothrace and the best Crowbar albums (especially in the vocal department with the trading off of emotional, clean howls and deeper, gravelly bellows), with a pinch of Rwake or oppositely Pink Floyd for spacious expanse, the more realized complexities of the last Baroness and Mastodon albums (although it is much better than either one in my opinion) and a tasty garnish of swaggering, southern sludge groove.

Basically, Sole Lord touches on the entire canon of modern and classic riff based genres that I know and love, and completely does its own take on ‘em. Fuck yeah, originality and the riffs I need to keep going…what more can I ask for!? To top it all off, the album unfolds in two major movements and one middle segue; “Endless Obsidian Abyss” (with its four segments “Innocence”, “Transition”, “Immortal” and “Deliverance”), “Wrath of the Sands” and “Born from Flesh and Stone” (comprised of “Wanderer”, “Healer”, “Aesthetic”, “Architect” and “Vessel”)…as you can tell there is a bigger story being told here and the whole thing is all about the trials and tribulations of ancient Egypt. The narrative is told through sparse lyrical fragments and extensive liner notes, and as mentioned earlier I think they tell a better story both through word and music than Nile ever did.

Echoing clean chords, shimmering with delay wander a barren desert of audio sand in the opening volley presented by “Innocence”. It takes roughly over a minute for the experimental, psychedelic beauty to dissolve into a roaring chorus of angry screams/growls nailed to winding, slightly southern-tinged post-doom riffing and leadwork. Further layers are added when the strained, world weary holler meets singing co-lead vocals enter the mix, leading the band into a transcendental chant of “Ra” overtop of a heaving Neurosis stomp. Already I’m sold and ultimately convinced that Hull will have no trouble in making the jump from one lengthy composition to an entire full-length recording.

Haunting, well distinguished chords, breathy bass exhales and very tight, nearly jazzy drum patterns flicker from your speakers like candles in an Egyptian temple during the early moments of “Transition”. Each note and beat seems to get louder and louder until the unit bites down on a thick, smoky riff that is perfectly buttressed by the growling, nearly death metal vocals. The sheer magnitude of these multi-headed riffs reminds me of the crush of Samothrace or Crowbar, but the uniquely inflected guitar lines give Hull their own proud identity amongst the catacombs (…Of Nephren Ka…sorry, I had to!). What began as a pummel slowly morphs to a dynamic push/pull aesthetic with nimble drum fills paving the way for hugely defined melodic riffing and soaring Neurosis/Baroness filtered guitar leads. You can tell immediately that three guitars are dishing out this stuff, and the vocals eventually wind down to another strange Hull harmony, where the clean yowls and gruff yells combine in perfect unison.

Flowing directly into “Immortal” (this whole album is best jammed in its entirety as sometimes you can’t even tell the break between tracks), Hull utilizes the ol’ reversal tactic by starting this one off with more destructive force than a Panzershreck, cooling things off for the lush bass groove and soaring Pink Floyd guitar melodies of the track’s midsection, resorting to near death metal weight shortly thereafter and touching down for another finale of saddened, tear inducing melodic sludge riffery, with those great light/dark vocal trade-offs adding that extra dose of flavor needed to satiate those with ravenous appetites for dynamic, metallic ma - HULL


"Hull signs to The End Records!"

One of the very first “sign this awesome local band” posts I wrote for this site way back on June 20th of 2007 was a show review of the crushingly heavy New York stoner/doom metal band Hull. They opened for Big Business that night and literally blew them away; several months later I saw them open up for Early Man at the same venue, and once again they stole the show. Hull’s live shows are just that powerful. So it is with extreme pleasure and excitement that The End Records has given me the opportunity to announce to the world that they have signed Hull to the label.


The band’s first record for The End, Sole Lord is currently in the mixing/editing phase and will drop some time in 2009. Says the band:

“As far as the album is concerned, we have been working with John Cosenza of Meteor Sound in Far Rockaway, NY. Everything is tracked and we are currently working on editing, mixing, and vocals ourselves in our studio in Brooklyn and once that’s finished we’ll be mastering with Alan Douches at West West Side. The artwork was done by Josh Graham (Neurosis, A Storm of Light) and the album has a conceptual, Siddhartha-esque pilgrimage theme and is set in third dynasty ancient Egypt.”

Check out Hull’s MySpace to get an idea of the band’s sound; but honestly, the recordings that are posted there now don’t quite do justice to the incredible power of their live performances (although I’m digging the track “Hurricane Fist”). Lucky then for NYC residents that can catch Hull play TOMORROW at Union Pool in Brooklyn as well as next Friday, December 19th, opening for Zozobra and The Austerity Program.

Congratulations to Hull!

-VN - metalsucks.net


"Hull"

Fair warning: They make "heavy" bands sound like Cat Power, and they have a reputation for blowing the power out at venues not worthy of their thunder-clap. See them now, bring earplugs. Hull was born in the wake of the fire...and they still burn... - the Family Business


"Hull"

Fair warning: They make "heavy" bands sound like Cat Power, and they have a reputation for blowing the power out at venues not worthy of their thunder-clap. See them now, bring earplugs. Hull was born in the wake of the fire...and they still burn... - the Family Business


"HULL / Incoming"

What do they sound like?
Somewhere between the somnambulant art metal of Neurosis, the clattering, abrasive prog of Mastodon and the raging doom rock of High On Fire, Brooklyn miscreants HULL lurk with malicious intent, churning out riffs of incalculable hugeness while juggling fistfuls of jarring tempo shifts. They're a balls-out rock 'n' roll band with finely-honed left field sensibilities.

Who's in the band?
Reverends...you know how that goes, which is awesome cause it's not the normal Jed plays bass and Stanford plays trumpet.

The story so far?
New York has long been a reliable source for thrilling new music, but it's not the first place you think of when it comes to the kind of monumental, bastardised, Sabbath-centric southern rock that HULL conjure up. This innovative quintet has built a bridge between unashamed retro bluster and something entirely fresh and new, and their reputation as one of the must-see live bands on the East Coast has flourished as a result. They're Currently working on their debut album, tentatively titled "Viking Funeral". Forthcoming gigs in NYC with the likes of Municipal Waste and The Sword look certain to establish HULL in 2007... - Metal Hammer


"HULL / Incoming"

What do they sound like?
Somewhere between the somnambulant art metal of Neurosis, the clattering, abrasive prog of Mastodon and the raging doom rock of High On Fire, Brooklyn miscreants HULL lurk with malicious intent, churning out riffs of incalculable hugeness while juggling fistfuls of jarring tempo shifts. They're a balls-out rock 'n' roll band with finely-honed left field sensibilities.

Who's in the band?
Reverends...you know how that goes, which is awesome cause it's not the normal Jed plays bass and Stanford plays trumpet.

The story so far?
New York has long been a reliable source for thrilling new music, but it's not the first place you think of when it comes to the kind of monumental, bastardised, Sabbath-centric southern rock that HULL conjure up. This innovative quintet has built a bridge between unashamed retro bluster and something entirely fresh and new, and their reputation as one of the must-see live bands on the East Coast has flourished as a result. They're Currently working on their debut album, tentatively titled "Viking Funeral". Forthcoming gigs in NYC with the likes of Municipal Waste and The Sword look certain to establish HULL in 2007... - Metal Hammer


"If I had a record label, and any balls whatsoever, I'd sign these bands immediately"

When I would have had the chance to sign Reservoir, I would have done that too, but now that they are on "indefinite hiatus" and members have chosen to focus on Hull, I'd definitely pick the latter up. All the crush of early Mastodon met with the ambient fire of Neurosis, but somehow avoids sounding like either one of them, hell yeah. Whoever ends up with these guys (and it'll be someone very soon, I'm sure) is going to be extremely lucky. And you know, it'd be me...if I had a record label and any balls whatsoever. [hullandhighwater.com] - Metal Maniacs


"If I had a record label, and any balls whatsoever, I'd sign these bands immediately"

When I would have had the chance to sign Reservoir, I would have done that too, but now that they are on "indefinite hiatus" and members have chosen to focus on Hull, I'd definitely pick the latter up. All the crush of early Mastodon met with the ambient fire of Neurosis, but somehow avoids sounding like either one of them, hell yeah. Whoever ends up with these guys (and it'll be someone very soon, I'm sure) is going to be extremely lucky. And you know, it'd be me...if I had a record label and any balls whatsoever. [hullandhighwater.com] - Metal Maniacs


Discography

Viking Funeral (1 song EP) Two movements 17min.
Sole Lord (The End Records)
Beyond The Lightless Sky (The End Records) avail Oct, 11 2011

Photos

Bio

Hailing from the streets of Brooklyn, HULL has yet again emerged with a creation to outlive the ages. Hard at work since the release of their debut album, “Sole Lord,” in 2009, ideas were envisioned and the mighty wind of creativity brought upon this Earth the latest saga, “Beyond The Lightless Sky”.

Digging further into the past, the Mayan epic takes the listener through a division of two brothers and the struggles that they are faced with. One finds salvation amongst the stars and the wisdom of a stranger, while the other is mesmerized with the bloodthirsty belief of sacrifice and self mutilation. In silence lies a realm that exists outside the plane of fear.

Taking the new songs on the road, HULL embarked on a successful mission to Austin for the SXSW festival to then triumphantly return and join forces with longtime friend and talented engineer/percussionist, Brett Romnes (IATA). Within an enormous, darkened club, many nights fell into morning as the immense sound was captured for the album, then finally putting the recording into the hands of a mixing madman, Billy Anderson. With such experience as The Melvins, Neurosis and Eyehategod, the journey was brutally finished.

Known to behold vast sound expanses, HULL maximizes harmony and tone within one monstrous palate. Upon your brow, focus, as a furious whip of intermingling guitars propel you through the atmosphere as a low pulse resonates through your entire being while the pounding drums blanket all chasms of reality. Find yourself immersed in a musical tide as it is played out before your ears beyond the lightless sky.