Drummer Nathan Buchanan can lock into a popping rhythm or crack it open from its seams. Bassist Eddie Sanchez can ooze into the gaps or flood them. But none of these characteristics are mutually exclusive: Bellafea’s roar can be beautiful, and its whimper can be ugly. Bellafea’s unlikely backstory fits the name and sound.
Heather McEntire was a freshman from the mountains of North Carolina adjusting to her new coastal college and moonlighting with a performance art troupe. She formed an acoustic guitar-and-violin duo and started working at the campus radio station. Fellow DJ Brent Fuscaldo offered to play drums. He quit.
Nathan Buchanan joined on bass, then drums. The pair won a local Battle Of The Bands. Fame was imminent. But Heather moved to Chapel Hill as the band split an Exotic Fever seven-inch with new friends Des Ark.
Nathan quit. First drummer Brent moved closer to Heather and played drums on 2003 EP Family Tree (Pidgeon English). Brent quit Bellafea for Chicago. Nathan moved to Chapel Hill.
He joined Bellafea for a second time. They didn’t catch their breath. Heather and Nathan played and wrote, touring with The Rosebuds and The Mountain Goats. “You don’t see a stage presence like Heather McEntire’s more than a few times in your life,” main Mountain Goat John Darnielle told Pitchfork Media.
“She’s unbelievable.” Darnielle agreed to sing on Bellafea’s first album, which Brian Paulson—familiar from Slint, Superchunk, Wilco, Beck and The Rosebuds—agreed to record. Eddie Sanchez had been doubling on keyboards and bass for a decade with Florida transplants Fin Fang Foom, and he agreed to play bass. Bellafea recorded. Southern signed them.
And here we are with Cavalcade, an album that moves in contrasts and dynamics as facts of life. And, if you’ve been paying attention to anything at all, you already know they are. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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