Q&A With Emily Bell Post-Kali Release

Now that the Emily Bell’s highly anticipated release of Kali has come and gone, and the after party has subsided, we spoke to the very busy rocker on how she feels about the EP.

How are you finding the reception of Kali?
Pretty great I think! I can only really gauge the reception by the energy at the show and playing this music live has been the most fun I’ve ever had on stage. Honestly, any reaction is welcome. Music is so personal and subjective, so it’s almost impossible for me to judge it one way or another. When you pour your heart out and leave it on the table, all bets are off!

Has this differed much to your first release?
Yeah in a lot of ways. The first record was recorded live more, a lot of the production and style happened in the moment. With Kali, I took a much different approach. I spent a lot of time crafting the parts and style. The guys and I got down to the brass tacks and just demoed and played and played and demoed until we got to where we wanted to be. I got to a place of trusting myself more creatively and was able to put a lot more of myself into the details.


How was the Kali release show at 3Ten ACL Live?
Magical. If I could have kissed everyone there on the mouth I would have.

How was recording the EP, any hiccups?
It was awesome. The studio is my favorite place to be. Sometimes the hiccups are the best part, it’s when you get to problem solve and get really creative. I did leave a pot of rice on the counter long enough for it to turn into a science experiment though. None of us wanted to deal with it so we just let it sit there and watched it like a petri dish through the glass top. A friend stopped by the studio and was thoroughly disturbed so he took it outside and hosed it down. I guess the point being, the studio has a way of warping your mind.

Why did you choose these songs for this EP?
They were what happened when I got down to writing. These were the first songs I wrote after we lost my partner’s daughter to a chronic disorder. I had these ideas of radical change before she suddenly passed and when she did, I knew that I had to completely throw myself into the deep end because that’s what she would have done and what she would have wanted me to do. It took me a while to reckon with everything and write again, but eventually, I was ready. I wanted it to feel triumphant and not defeating. Feminist anthems while still reckoning with pain and loss.

Which is your favorite song, and why?
I have a special relationship with all of them of course. But I guess right now if I had to name one, I would say Goddess of Destruction. There’s a lot packed into that song. But in short, it’s about embracing anger, that anger can be a very useful catalyst for change. And where we are at today, there are just so many reasons to be angry. It is so necessary that we recognize the anger and not let it fester, but channel it into action.

It is so important that we continue to point out that what is happening in our country right now is not right, that it is putting our most vulnerable citizens in danger. Millions of people marched on January 22nd 2017 because we are very angry at this administration’s treatment of women, the LGBTQ community, the sick, the poor, immigrants, Muslims, Latinos, African Americans. So I’ll choose that song because it’s a reminder that it’s not healthy to allow anger to fester nor is it healthy to ignore it. The only thing do is to use it to ignite continued change for good.

What are your plans for the future?
To keep getting better at what I do. I’m always going to want to top what I just did. So that’s what I plan to do.

What would you tell any young girl who wants to be in your position?
Listen to your inner voice. Take your time and enjoy the journey. Stay hungry for knowledge. There is always something new to learn. Never give your power away to anyone and never compromise when it comes to your art and your image. You are more powerful and capable than you might think. It’s a hard truth that young women are very vulnerable in this business. We have to be very selective with the people we keep around us and who we take advice from. Work with other women, and support other female artists, they are your greatest allies. Take care of your voice. Singers don’t get to put their vocal cords in a case after the show. Your body is your instrument, love it and protect it!

Her EP is available to stream and buy on her website http://www.emilybell.com

Twitter @EmilyBellMusic
Insta @EmilyBellMusic

Author: Megan Matthews

Emily Bell & The Talkbacks ‘Kali’ Release Party Photo Review

Last Saturday, Austin’s alt-rock goddess Emily Bell & The Talkbacks debuted their brand new Kali EP at 3TEN Austin City Limits Live with special guests, ZEALE and The Warplanes. Track Rambler photographer J. Alan Love managed to sidestep Bell’s path of destruction just long enough to capture these images from the show.

Emily Bell & The Talkbacks



The Warplanes




Photos by: J. Alan Love


Emily Bell & The Talkbacks Release The Goddess of Destruction With ‘Kali’ EP

Emily Bell & The Talkbacks recently released their EP Kali, three years after their 2014 ‘In Technicolor’ debut. Once, Austin’s secret, Bell’s music is making its way across the country and into the hearts of everybody who hears this five-track album.

“Can’t Talk Back” opens the EP, with an edgy mixture of rhythmic speaking and tones that ring in your ears afterward. This one’s a power ballad with attitude – it’s definitely no Bryan Adams. The Talkbacks hold all the energy of that garage-rock band that’s always ‘waking up the neighbors’, but with all the skill of well-honed professionals. There’s no doubt who’s in charge here and it’s definitely Bell, in this easy to listen to tune, vamped up with synthesizers.

Bell has a message she wants the world to know; empowerment is not something to be afraid of. She is, and she wants every female to be, with all proceeds of her April 29th Official Release Party being donated to The Girls Empowerment Network. Bell believes in you, even if you don’t believe in yourself and her voice will pick you back up from the cold floor after a hard week.

This message is reverberated throughout the EP, with the first song released “Goddess of Destruction” taking a much softer approach. Her accent is prominent as she calls out for ‘Kali’, sweet and honest. But the song turns choppy and turbulent; like gritty coffee beans not quite stirred into your morning coffee, bitter and interesting enough to glue you to it, as the sweetness warms your stomach. “We’ll all be bigger than the dream,” she promises. She’s leading a crowd and we can’t help but follow. This is a protest and I hear what she’s saying; nothing can stop you now.

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Known for blazing stages and rock ‘n’ roll style, she’s the epitome of women in contemporary rock. A modern day female Nikki Sixx, but with much more tension and vulnerability. She refuses to lose her femininity and as you make your way through the EP, she shows this with pride, stronger with the stain of her pain.

The final song on this album will leave you craving more. “Crashing Hearts” is vulnerable and soulful, a side to Emily that shows you that it’s okay to be sad sometimes, it makes you feel like you know her. She sings softly “one day together, and the next day alone”, captioning a feeling of heartbreak in this song. She speaks metaphorically, depicting it as a car crash; brutal, violent and fatal, yet oddly so beautiful. She shows that you can be strong and still have fears too.

She captions every doubt and every painful step, exposing her weaknesses, but she doesn’t care and nor will you. Vulnerable or not, she’s empowered and she is in charge.

Emily Bell and The Talkbacks Official Kali Release Party will be held on Saturday, April 29 at 3TEN Austin City Limits Live. All proceeds will be donated to The Girls Empowerment Network. Tickets available here: http://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1442483

Can’t Talk Back
Girls That Never Die
Goddess of Destruction
Crashing Hearts

Twitter @EmilyBellMusic
Insta @EmilyBellMusic

Author: Megan Matthews

Rambler Playlist March 6th

This week’s playlist is all about attitude with four bold and aggressive tracks to get the adrenaline pumping. The first track comes to us from Cure For Paranoia, a “trippy, soul-infused, hip-hop” quartet out of Dallas’ Deep Ellum. ‘Bad Impression’ is a menacing track with a head-bouncing beat and intimidating lyrics. The rapid bassline knocks as cumbia-esque howls and rings fill the background all wrapped together with a hyper, articulate delivery from frontman, Cameron McCloud and special guest, Topic.

The next track, ‘Mustang Kids,’ comes to us from Zella Day’s KICKER album, one of the most complete albums we’ve come across lately. ‘Mustang Kids’ is a certain kind of special. This passionate and ambitious track featuring Baby E takes Zella’s arousing sound to a ravenous level. ‘Mustang Kids’ is pissed-off pop for a new generation.

I will make no secret of the fact that I’m a huge Mobley fan. This Austin-based, “solo” showman is a straight-up beast that defines post-genre pop with originality and adventurous experimentation. Typically a one-man band, Mobley, collaborated with Houston two-piece rockers, Catch Fever, on his latest track, ‘Dreamers‘. A distorted drum beat and monstrous robotic duet engulf Mobley’s airy vocals texturing this track with an antagonistic overtone. Light and dark battle as the mood of ‘Dreamers’ evolves from brooding and malevolent to progressive and uplifting with the chorus of “are you gonna change or are you gonna die?”

Emily Bell’s latest track is a promising preview from her upcoming Kali EP due out April 21. This tenacious ‘Godess of Destruction’ channels her raw, primal femininity with ‘Can’t Talk Back,’ an  energetic garage rock track with avant-garde flare. Bell hits peak ferocity with the howling chorus of this powerful women’s anthem proving she’s the tremor in our earthquake and sugar in our milkshake. If you like this track, you’ll love the video which features Bell padded in ‘pigskin polyester’ channeling her inner J.J. Watt with the all-female Austin Raiders.