Gully Boys Bring Emo Back to the Cities

by Felicity Bosk

Photo credits: Felicity Bosk
Photo credits: Felicity Bosk

Emo, soulful, with a little beach vibe. Gully Boys is made up of three ladies based in Minneapolis. They released “Not So Brave,” their debut album, in August and they’ve got the Twin Cities talking.

The album name comes from the song Half Full, which is also drummer Nadirah McGill’s favorite song.

“We love the harmonies in the chorus and the ending of the song in specific” said McGill. “At first when writing, it was one of our least favorites but after hearing the finish product we couldn’t be more happy.”

Other band members are Kaytee Callahan on guitar and Natalie Klemond on bass. The two of them have known each other since middle school, and McGill later met Callahan while working together at Ragstock. 

My personal favorite song on “Not so Brave” is Greasy-- a song about lacking personal hygiene and lethargy during depressive episodes in both a literal and symbolic sense. It’s got a catchy pop-punk vibe throughout and even though at first I didn’t fully understand the lyrics I was trying to sign along.

The first single of “Not So Brave” was Dizzy Romantic. It’s a powerful song about fighting with a romantic partner that gets more loud and aggressive as it goes on. It’s gotten radio play on The Current, and the band has since been interviewed by the Star Tribune and City Pages.

Gully Boys name their biggest influences as Hole, Alanis Morrissette, PJ Harvey, and No Doubt. To me, Hole is the most noticeable influencer; they’re also a female lead punk rocking band with very similar vocal style and energy. 

They had their album release show at the famous 7th Street Entry. After the show they began their first tour. They traveled playing shows around the Midwest until eventually making their way to New Orleans.

“It was incredible,” said McGill. “Loved playing in a new city every night. Made us love Minneapolis even more though.”

This album is the sort of thing I could see getting really big in the world of underground music. It’s catchy, it’s smart, it’s powerful, and it’s fun to listen to. In a genre that’s been male-dominated for decades, it is refreshing and exciting to see more female voices lifted up. 

Gully Boys don’t currently have any concert dates set up for a Duluth show but at the rate they’re rising in popularity I’d bet they’ll make the trip up here to rock with Northlanders soon.