Description defies Oklahoma City trio Bowlsey. With guitar, organ, synthesizers, rapping and singing all making their way into the mix, “music” is about the only apt descriptor for the sounds Bowlsey makes.
“People will ask us what we think we sound like, and I honestly don’t know what to tell them,” said Taylor “Shraz” Mercier, who does a little bit of everything for the act. “It satisfies all kinds of music, and goes from here to there and back again. Everybody can get on board.”
Joined by singer Clarissa “Cid” Castillo and multi-instrumentalist “The Reverend” Justin Hogan, Bowlsey is fueled by an eclectic diet of Reggie Watts, MF Doom, The Clash, Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All and, strangely, The Beatles. The one act the three find steady comparisons to are Damon Albarn’s not-a-band band, Gorillaz … in that anything goes.
“I’ve never seen this kind of reaction,” said Hogan, active in the Oklahoma music scene since the mid-1990s. “I’ve been in bands good and bad, but nothing has ever compared to this. This is the most different thing I’ve ever done and really seen around here. It’s also the easiest … so fun and refreshing.”
After stumbling upon Castillo and Mercier, both recent Houston transplants, Hogan struck up a friendship that soon segued into a musical partnership when he discovered the instruments strewn about the twosome’s home, which Hogan now shares.
“I started off kind of managing and consulting. Then I started writing, then playing, and now I live here,” he said, laughing. “What they were doing blew my mind. I got sucked into it.”
Since officially forming in January, the trio has built a fledgling following enamored with Bowlsey’s unique tunes, five of which can be found on Sleepy Weather, a collection of tracks available for free online. Fittingly, it was released on Valentine’s Day.
Although the band currently is focused on performing live, new music — whether in the form of an album, EP or stream of singles — should see day light by year’s end or soon thereafter.
“There’s definitely enough to have an album. Each of us, being separate songwriters and musicians, have a pool big enough to draw from,” Mercier said. “There are so many things about to happen. It’s just a matter of how we want to deliver it.”
Playing Thursday at Kamps 1310 Lounge, Bowlsey is excited to share its one-of-a-kind tunes, which are only getting better with time, however little has passed thus far.
Said Castillo, “There’s a lot of development to be shown.”