Churchill singer/guitarist Tim Bruns and mandolin player Mike Morter have been making folk-infused rock songs with delicate bluegrass flair together since the first day they met. In 2009, Bruns and Morter added bassist Tyler Rima, drummer Joe Richmond, and keyboardist/singer Bethany Kelly to their lineup, a move that vastly expanded their sound and birthed the high-energy alt-country/pop-rock hybrid that is Churchill.

As with all of Churchill’s releases so far, Change EP is entirely self-produced and self-recorded by the band to truly capture the raw, frenetic energy of their live show. Their upcoming debut for A&M/Octone, offers up a selection of songs that flaunt their supreme skills in blending hook-laced pop with soulfully charged, lushly textured rock. From the freewheeling country swing of “Ark in a Flood” (a sprawling anthem marked by soaring, sunny harmonies) to the Motown strut of “Change” (a gorgeously pained love song on which Kelly’s tough but tender vocals take the lead), Change EP enlists Churchill as an outfit that’s both classic in sensibility and undeniably fresh in sound.

Always honored to be on stage, Churchill's live experience is a major part of how they effectively leave their audience feeling hopeful and ready to change the world.

The Heat Run

The Heat Run is an indie-groove-folk collective based in Philadelphia. Brothers Mike and Steve Schaller began their musical collaboration as Oso, but it evolved into something new that demanded a new name and a fresh start when Steve introduced his brother to Ms. Mandy Shearer, an old friend from Virginia. A musical and romantic connection was immediate and they began churning out a bountiful harvest of new material that drew inspiration from the classic outlaw country, bluegrass, and soul records in Mandy’s record collection as well as the indie, surf, dub, and psychedelic rock in Mike’s. The now married couple introduced the batch of songs to the other members of Oso (including bassist Mike Gordon and drummer Josh Fullam) and the soulful, foot-stomping, hand clapping, group sing-a-longs that define The Heat Run’s music ensued.

To fill out the sound they added multi-instrumentalist Frank Ewing, formerly of Downtown Harvest. They are also often joined by Ben Trout on keys and Mark Henderson and Tina Marie on percussion. The crew has been meeting for revivals up and down the East Coast from Roanoke to upstate New York.

The Heat Run’s self-titled debut album was recorded in warehouses, churches, garages, basements, bedrooms, closets, and backyards throughout the Philadelphia area. It is a true collaboration, with songwriting credits spread between the three Schallers, and bassist Mike Gordon. Each member performed on multiple instruments and almost everyone contributed vocals. The record is due for release in 2011.

Ladies Auxiliary

Spectral country and soul from Philadelphia



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Churchill with The Heat Run, Ladies Auxiliary

Thursday, December 20 · 8:00 PM at North Star Bar