Posts Tagged ‘Petrol Hoers’

8th May 2020

Christopher Nosnibor

One thing’s for certain: lockdown is galvanising musicians to be innovative in ways that are truly unprecedented. Yes, I said it. The advent of the Internet may have revolutionised / fucked the music industry, and while in a bygone age, home taping didn’t kill music and neither did Napster at the turn of the millennium, iTunes and Spotify, in their attempt to create a new model that monetised downloading managed to inflict new levels of financial harm on the artists they were supposed to benefit.

Having recently found unexpected favour and airplay on BBC radio with a song about wanking lifted from last year’s Oh I Don’t Know, Just Horse Stuff, I Guess, York-based premium purveyors of relentless hoofcore had to do something while unable to don horse masks and dresses in public. And this is what they’ve done.

The Hoers’ press blurb explains it all best, and mostly in block caps:

21 Viral Hits is a collaboration between Petrol Hoers and vocalists across the country who answered his call. The initial pitch was pretty straightforward:



but soon resulted in a group of vocalists/lyricists putting pen to paper and then voice to microphone (or in some cases smartphone…) to lay down vocal parts while Hoers worked as a one-horse grind machine to write and record as many tracks as possible. Song subjects were agreed, production advice given and shrieking beast of an album was pieced together that was a triumph of remote collaboration.

With original cover art by Cat Bowen as the finishing touch, this album looks as massive as it sounds.’

And it’s true: it is absolutely fucking massive. And not just because it’s got 21 tracks on it, most of which are themed around this moment in time, as titles like ‘2 Metres’, ‘Lockdown’, ‘Great pasta famine of 2020AD’, ‘Wash Your Hands’, and ‘Selfish Cunts’ evidence.

Because it’s a Petrol Hoers album it’s brimming with high-octane, hundred-mile-an-hour bangers. But while previous excursions have increasingly favoured technoindustrial stylings, with thumping drum ‘n’ bass grooves and gnarly synths dominating the arrangements, 21 Viral Hits sees Dan Buckley and his myriad virtual collaborators return to the Hoers roots and goes full on grind / thrash metal, and it’s a filthy, furious guitar assault, and the longest song is two minutes in duration, on the nose.

‘Locusts’ rages at the panic-buying, trolley-filling, shelf-clearing fuckheads. ‘Insanitizer’ reels off a shopping list of unavailable items: ‘Pasta’s been taken / Bread is scarce’ is the core of the verse.

It’s rather less humorous and irony-filled than anything the Hoers have done before, but it’s an album of the times, and as a relentless, thunderous, metal racketacious capturing of this brief but terrifying moment in modern history, 21 Viral Hits fulfils its objective in delivering a gnarly, shouty, sonic battering that leaves you feeling bewildered, but no less bewildered than five minutes watching the news.



28th February 2019

Christopher Nosnibor

Piiiisssss’ third LP appeared by stealth, after a two-year hiatus, seemingly taking even its creator, the ever-prolific and unpredictable Dan Buckley, who has more projects, bands and pseudonyms than probably he can remember, by surprise, launching it via Facebook with the announcement ‘Lol I guess we have 3 albums now’. And as if to illustrate the point, that now stands at four just three days later, with the arrival of Enthusiast_ on 2nd March.

This five-tracker is a showcase of Buckley’s comparatively recent move into circuit-making, and if some of his kit doesn’t look especially pretty, then the sounds it makes are even more challenging at times. It’s front-loaded with the epics: ‘1’ is the first of the seemingly randomly-numbered / titled tracks, and is twelve-and-a-half minutes of oscillating loops.

‘II’, which clocks in at eleven-and-a-half minutes ventures into dark ambient territory, whispering and rumbling ominously and quietly, the distant whispers and moans creeping over a mid-range hum resembling a far-off herd of zombies in The Walking Dead. It’s unsettling, creepy… and then echoes of synth hum buzz louder, reverberating into the dead atmosphere. The drone rises to the fore and ultimately dominates everything, creating its own rhythm as the frequencies collide in a slow tidal wash. Sliding down the octaves, it transforms into a fear-chord organ throb that oozes unsettling vibes while a voice, roboticised and barely audible, winds down slowly in the background.

The third track is entitled ‘00000011’, and goes for the out-and-out eerie, with gloopy synths and bleeps and shooting star effects echoing into blackness to conjure an atmosphere that’s pure space-age horror. And if that genre doesn’t exist, then someone needs to make a movie to fit with this soundtrack.

‘Five’ is gnarly, loud, the fucked-up and desperate robotix vocal submerged in a woozy, warping wave of drone, rent with glitches, before it descends into a mess of scratching noise on the circuit-melting closer, ‘Confirmed Sixhavers’.

Piiiisssss marks quite a departure from many of Buckley’s myriad other musical outlet, not least of all his prolonged foray into playing covers revamped as bangin’ donk choons, or the industrial-disco grind of Petrol Hoers, and Alan & His Parents functions well as a standalone piece which showcases one of the many facets of a remarkably diffuse artist.



Christopher Nosnibor

The soundcheck in progress while I’m ordering my first pint suggests we’re in for a loud night. Well, the Facebook event page did give fair warning. It’s a good job I’ve brought earplugs: the guy behind the bar points out that he’s already wearing his.

It’s 6:40pm on a Sunday evening in August. Outside, it’s still warm and the sun is out. Inside, it’s seriously dark, even with the curtains open and daylight filtering in. The THING – whose ‘Nightmares for Children’ streamed exclusively on Aural Aggravation back in April, begin their set with a dolorous bell chime and ominous, droning synths. The fear notes give way to a massage deluge of gut-grinding sludge: the guitar sounds like a bass, the bass sounds the bowels of Beelzebub after a phal. As they thunder through a continuous half-hour set, I’m reminded of Sleep, but the samples and synths which emerge through the murk gives an industrial edge to the doomy dronescape which reaches its climax by building through a single chord and floor to being battered at increasing speed before breaking into a tsunami of sludge.



Rotting Monarchs win band name of the night, no question. But starting fifteen minutes late in a tightly-packed schedule is not so cool, and they seem a bit disorganised and lacking in finesse. Still, their shouty, grindy punky racket brought together bits of NOFX with hints of Bomb Disneyland, which is no bad thing.

The place is suddenly a lot busier: Shrieking Violet have brought their mates. And they’re young. Many of them have short skirts and shiny new DMs. I’m here in my cracked £20 steel-toed Chelsea boots and beer-stained jacket. I’m not expecting much. Yes, they’re pure 80s, as if the singer’s hair and shirt didn’t give it away. The first track has hints of early Ultravox. But equally as the set progresses, I’m reminded of This Et Al minus the falsetto. They benefit from some hooky tunes propelled by some phenomenal, powerhouse percussion. ‘Avalanche’ is built around a steely, cyclical riff worthy of Killing Joke, and overall, it’s a strong set.

Shrieking Violet

Shrieking Violet

They may be playing as a three-piece sans bassist Dani, but SEEP AWAY still manage to bring eye-popping intensity and ear-shredding volume to proceedings. The eight-string guitar ensures the sound’s got density, and when paired with Dom Smith’s fierce drumming – his second set of the night having already pounded through The THING’s set – there’s plenty of sonic backdrop for Jay to do his manic thing. He’s a hell of a showman: that he’s wild and unpredictable and relentlessly in the crowd’s faces means you can’t take your eye off him for a second.



My opinions on novelty bands are no secret, and in the main, I think they suck. Petrol Hoers are a novelty bad so perverse, so fucked-up and plain wrong, that they’re an exception. Two blokes – two fat blokes – one wearing dungarees with no shirt, but a comedy horse’s head, the other wearing red Y-fronts, a fine mesh vest and a Mexican wrestling mask, stomp around hollering over backing tracks of blistering, uptempo industrial-strength bangin’ techno. In paper, it sounds both weird and shit in equal measure, but the audacity of these guys is as sheer as the pants guy’s top. The half dozen people who last the duration of their set absolutely fucking love it.


Petrol Hoers

Little Death Machine take the stage ten minutes after their set was supposed to finish. Are they worth the wait? Absolutely. The London trio play in near-darkness, adding to the taut atmosphere which emanates from their technically precise and detailed compositions. On account of being scribbled in the dark (and not on account of the pints consumed over the course of the evening), my notes are a shade difficult to decipher, but in the moment I was taken by their rock / post-rock / hop-hop / soul rock hybrid. I also note by way of reference points Placebo, Oceansize, Nine Inch Nails, TesseracT, and some stuff I can’t make out from the scrawl.


Little Death Machine

Did I really write ‘soul rock’? Yes, it appears so, and if that reads like an insult or criticism, it’s not: the moods that are deeply entwined within the songs, which are complex and progressive in their structures, are played with a sincerity and soulfulness that you feel. And that’s something no amount of technical ability or compositional dexterity can fake. It’s emotive, textured and resonant. And the perfect finish to an intense and varied night of live music.