In this time of political unease it seems only fair that we deserve bands that can help us voice our concerns as a generation. With Brexit and another General Election looming large on the horizon, London rockers Sisteray could be just the band to provide this requirement.
The four-piece of Niall Rowan (vocals), Dan Connolly (guitar), Marco Polo (drums) and Mick Hanrahan (bass) are a throwback to ‘good old proper music’ of the likes of punk pioneers like The Clash and The Velvet Underground with a rocky edge of Oasis meets Slaves.
The band released debut five-track EP 15 Minutes last month, which gives us a fascinating insight into their political viewpoints. We had a chat with Mick to find out more, and he told us: “We try to emulate the sound of what is going on around us. We are the sound of a disillusioned London. We are the sound of disenfranchised, angry young people who don’t see their voices being heard. We are loud, brash and to the point. No holds barred, new breed punk.”
Lead track off the EP is Queen’s English, a potential new national anthem for the ordinary man. It’s certainly the first track we’ve heard that starts with the Queen talking – taken from The Queen’s Speech back in May regarding Britain needing to ‘live within its means,’ which the band believes has led to a divided Britain.
It opens up with a cool guitar riff that leads into the opening verse, with the awesome lyrics: “We don’t speak the Queen’s English round here, just an accent you won’t be familiar with, we use words that you never heard, you slag.” The second verse continues in the same vein, with the lyrics: “Her tongue is a poisoned chalice, we’re just peasants born to pay for the palace,” which summarise the anger the band, and people all over the country, feel towards The Queen and her government by the line “We’re fucked, let’s be realistic.” There’s cool rocky guitars and infectious vocal delivery aplenty that make this a great little track.
In Mick’s words: “The song actually came about because of that speech. It felt like such an insult to watch a woman sat on a gold thrown in a gold crown telling us to live within our means. People have the right to be what they want to be, to do what they want to do. Brexit was around the corner and the song just started flowing. It is an angry answer to a government that seemed to not be listening. They didn’t seem to want to help.”
Check it out for yourself in the video below:
The EP continues with the band’s political viewpoints infused with awesome rock, including the excellent Nostalgia Trip and the fast and furious Faaast For Food. But my personal favourite may be Famous For Nothing, which opens up with an awesome guitar riff and is infectiously catchy. I’m presuming is all about the joke that is modern society’s obsession with reality TV ‘fame,’ which is indicative of Sisteray’s outspoken, but easy to relate to, viewpoints.
Mick explains: “We write about the things that go on. It is usually something that has annoyed us, or a general observation. We have written about Brexit, reality TV culture, peoples’ want for instant gratification, being stuck on the same dead end streets and anything else that catches our eye. We have so much going on around us and to us that we have endless influence. A time may come when the biggest issue on our minds is broken hearts or the one that got away, but that time isn’t now and until things change that time will not be top of any agenda.”
Mick also tells us that the one of the best things the band has done is setting up their own live music night at the Black Heart in Camden, called Welcome to the Monkey House. Mick said: “We did it so we could put on the bands we love and play the music we want to hear. It is now on its 11th outing and we have had bands like Berries, Bullet Proof Bomb, IDestroy and loads more that are starting to get their break. It is a great chance for us to make sure the bands get paid, which is a huge deal in the London music scene.”
Sisteray will be gigging relentless off the back of 15 Minutes, including a gig at Mau Mau Bar in London at3.15pm today (in about an hour from the time of writing!) and a show at Camden Rocks Festival on 3 June. More information on their upcoming shows is here. They’re also trialling new songs ready for release sometime this year, so expect plenty more from this exciting band shortly.