From 3OH!3 to Breathe Carolina, Flobots, The Lumineers, and One Republic, many well known bands call Colorado home. Now, the Denver-based band Churchill has begun to receive national attention as well with the release of “Change EP.” Since its beginning in 2009, Churchill has been successful, appearing in SXSW and opening for The Fray, another local band. Churchill drummer Joe Richmond attributes this recent success to the band’s eventual signing with record label A&M Octone. In an interview with news site “Music Is My Oxygen,” Richmond says that Churchill has “been playing in Denver a lot the past couple of years, and that led to meeting some people in the Denver music scene… One of the big things that led to getting some attention from record labels was The Fray having us out on a couple of shows. That led to getting some recognition from some people… [and] that kind of started the ball rolling.”
As for classifying Churchill, that is surprisingly difficult. A relatively new band, they only have a few songs available to listen to and each song is unique. Still, Mike Morter, the guitarist/mandolin player of the bunch, did his best to describe the band. “It’s kinda like if Nickle Creek and Coldplay started a band together. That’s kinda what we’re like. We’re a rock ‘n roll, folk band.” And when “Music Is My Oxygen” asked them to describe their sound, vocalist and guitarist Tim Bruns responded, “It’s always hard for us to answer that because we have a hard time even knowing what kind of music we make, and we’re always wanting to make something different all the time. It’s a hard one. But, it’s pop rock music at it’s core.” This difficulty in classifying Churchill is probably why the new band is so appealing to a large audience and a broad range of music listeners.
The opening and title track to “Change EP” strongly emphasizes classically trained vocalist Bethany Kelly. This track has been wildly popular on many different stations and has appeared on everything from alternative rock to pop heavy radio. The EP then progresses from the rock-influenced “Made a List,” led by Bruns voice and a heavy dose of electric guitar, to a poppy-folksy-hello-mandolin-this-is-interesting-but-catchy tune with “Ark in a Flood.” “Change EP” finishes strong with a duet between Kelly and Bruns in “Sing Out Your Love,” a song about the end of a relationship. But with such a wide range of genres, this is just the beginning for Churchill. With a full length album due out sometime next year, it is safe to say that Churchill is a band to watch out for in 2013.