Yes, Bill has three sons and together with two friends they decided to form an alt. country/rootsrock/Americana band. “Sirens” is their third record. The band has a close resemblance with Whiskeytown, Drive by Truckers and a hint of Tom Petty. The difference is that the band and on “Sirens” doesn’t have the sharp tough sometimes punk edges and influences like in Whiskeytown or the distinctive deep southern rock sound by Drive by Truckers. But that does not mean the record is no good. Definitely not!
After the first two turns “Sirens” sounds somewhat flat. Most likely it will give you the feeling it is just a little bit too sweet. But then slowly things and pieces come together. You’ll start to notice things. Singing in harmony has been used as starting point within the structures of the songs. All the three brothers sing and take the lead vocals on their songs. But on almost every song the brother-singer is accompanied by his brothers in the chorus. You’ll notice that youngest (but tallest) brother James Wilson has this typical southern accent, just like CCR’s John Fogerty or Drive-by Truckers Patterson Hood. You’ll notice the balance with
Titletrack is a rather fast radio friendly rootsrock song. The 7+ minutes ‘Turn it up’ is the instant favorite with the jam-ending. The song breaks in the middle into a great guitar solo, played by Sam Wilson. He is a very fine guitarist with a very clean in control tone (not only in the studio but also live). The slow ‘The tree’ find the brothers singing almost a capella, with hardly any instruments. ‘This losing fight’ is a fast rootsrock number giving hints of a Tom Petty in form. “Virginia Calling” starts slow and accelerates some to its tension.
“Sirens” is not the most explosive or edgy record. It’s a good crafted, very pleasant record. And yes, the Whiskeytown influence and resemblance is there. No strange thing if you think that the precious record was produced by that band producer Jim Scott. Luckily “Sons of Bill” are not a copy-band. But funny enough it feels like if the band would add a sharp, raw touch into their music they definitely will be one of the stand-out bands within the Americana scene.