April 5, 2023

Honestly? – one look at the song titles on this album, and I just had to have a dabble!

Rehearsed, recorded and mixed between the numerous U.K lockdowns in Roden House, one of Nottingham’s former lace factories – this is where the Hip Priests have their own space, and this is where they spawned the album title. This is no Mississippi Blues but perhaps it makes more sense than you think: howling laments, loss, self-reflection and revelation – alongside some recurring Priests lyrical themes: negativity, nihilism, rage and revolution. After 2019’s ‘Stand for Nothing‘ the band were unsure whether they’d do another album, but global lockdown inadvertently led to a renewed passion and realisation that, like Jagger said, ”what can a poor boy do” – especially when feeling more lost in a world that increasingly resembles a dumpster fire. A few dozen demos were collectively kicked around, of which, through a stricter-than-ever group consensus, 14 were recorded but then honed down, razor sharp, into the tightest collection of 11 low-fat, lean and mean banging tunes that they could fit into 30 minutes.

The Hip Priests are:
Nathan Von Cruz – lead vocals 
Austin Rocket – guitar/vocals
Lee Love – bass/vocals 
Gentle Ben – guitar/vocals 
D.P. Bomber – drums
and – a poodle!

Since their inception in 2006, The Hip Priests have released a mighty thirty 7″ singles, four albums, two compilations and three EPs by various independent labels from all over Europe & the USA. Every previous release from these guys has received rave reviews, ranging from ‘a band on top of their game & steps ahead of any of their UK contemporaries‘ to ‘if you’re in any doubt about how good these bad boys are then you need locking up‘! After 16 years some bands would be taking it easy but in spite of a global pandemic, there was no let- up in their determination and activity. Their fifth and, by general consent, by far their best full-length album – Roden House Blues was written, rehearsed and recorded during this period and is released on 5th May 2023 via The Sign Records.

So! – eleven tracks of glorious in-yer-face, high-energy, anthemic, adrenalised, sweaty, singalong, life-affirming Rock and Roll. Huge choruses, colossal dual guitar rifferama, more hooks than a fishing shop, and one hell of an attitude. Pub Rock, Punk, Garage Rock, Scandi Rock – you get the picture, they’re a perfect fit for The Sign Records! Just beware – they have some serious attitude that they’re more than happy to share with you! Eddie Spaghetti, he of the veteran US punk band Supersuckers was moved to declare the Priests as “The finest Rock N’ Roll band in the UK” -so there you have it!

Priests plus pooch looking mean!

Fiercely independent and tirelessly driven, the Hip Priests have preached their high-energy sermon of misanthropy, hate and contempt across numerous tours of the UK, Europe and USA and made countless rapturously received festival appearances. Gaining a richly deserved reputation as a white-hot live band, the last few years have seen the band’s popularity increasing further with them regularly playing alongside kindred spirits such as The Hellacopters, Gluecifer, The Good the Bad and the Zugly, New Bomb Turks, Dwarves and Zeke at both festivals and in clubs.

Following the opening up of live music again, the band have spent the year playing live as much as possible, kicking off with a full UK tour alongside Supersuckers and including numerous trips to Europe. Tours are already booked throughout the U.K and Europe in support of the new album release, for 2023. 

The offering opens with Trojan Horseshit – what a great, great title! ninety seconds of rabble-rousing carnage! This is punk/pub-rock like it used to be – very fast, very loud, very sweaty! Inaction Rocks continues in the same vein, I’m out of breath already, just thinking what this lot must be like live!

Shakin’ ain’t Fakin’ features massive earth-shaking choruses and riffs, all belted out at the requisite 100mph. But it’s tuneful underneath the musical tyranny, it takes me right back to the halcyon days of the Feelgoods, Eddie and the Hot Rods, Radio Stars, and the entire STIFF stable to mention but a few. Pissed on Power…is this where the pooch comes in?! Can’t abide with me has a wonderful intro….and I defy you to keep still to it. Nearly reaching the four-minute mark, this is the album’s longest track!

Chasing Death is pure The Damned to me, and I ain’t complaining! Sell My Soul and Just to Get By keep up the relentless pace, then we’re blessed with another all-time Great Title – Persistence is Futile! Reminding me of The Hives, there’s some really seething riff-work in here, if you can catch your breath to listen…ironically the barnstorming chorus is “Slow down, Don’t give it up; Slow down, Dont give a f***”

Tiger In My Tank perfectly captures the tautness of this band – fast and frenetic is may be, but bang on the buttons. And then we close with The Best Revenge, another social rant, as with them all, but still such a crowd-pleaser, a massive chorus….the Spirit of ’77 is Alive and truly Kickin’ with these guys!

….And breathe!

Roden House Blues‘ is released on May the 5th and will be available on all streaming platforms, CD, and in three colour variants on vinyl; (1) black vinyl, (2) solid turquoise vinyl with solid white splatter, solid black splatter, and solid blue splatter, and (3) transparent/clear vinyl with transparent yellow splatter and transparent pink splatter…..What would Mr. Lydon say! 

The Hip Priests can be found at: https://thehippriests.com