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Rot In Hell Vocalist Gives a Lesson in British Humor

Photo: Fred Pessaro


Rot In Hell play the kind of unrelenting hardcore that is immune to any of the fleeting scene trends plaguing the underground these days. Vocalist Nate’s sandpaper-rough vocals and the band’s to-the-point arrangements bring to mind legendary acts like Negative Approach and Cro-Mags. The UK group will be releasing ‘As Pearls Before Swine,’ their debut album for Deathwish Inc., on April 12th. Fans of the aforementioned artists should definitely seek out a copy.

Even though Rot In Hell’s music is the farthest thing from funny, we wanted to ask Nate about his native England’s rich comedic history. Luckily for us, he was game and let us in on some of his favorite comedians and films. See, hardcore guys can laugh too!

We checked out your band’s Tumblr page and you guys definitely like to take the piss out of things. Tell us about the British sense of humor and how you think it’s different from humor in the States and/or other parts of the world.

I like to think that the British sense of humor is a more refined and subtle blade. We tend to deal in negative humor — sarcasm, satire, and ridicule. One has to only compare a show like ‘The Office’ to its Transatlantic counterpart to see how much more intolerant and unreasonable we are as a people. Taking the piss is a cherished British pastime and one that I have enjoyed sharing with many of the ego-inflated septic bands we occasionally share the stage with over here.

That said, your Douglas Stanhope remains my absolute hero. You should all be very proud.

Who are some of your favorite British comics and comedic films?

I like the kinds of comedians that enjoy causing audience discomfort with their wit and delivery whilst spitting out truth with a forked tongue. In that regard, Stewart Lee is the perfect weapon.
Karl Pilkington’s unimpressed and nonchalant attitude to pretty much everything (other than homosexuals, the physically deformed, and primates) is naturally a favorite within our band.

As far as British comedy movies go, I haven’t seen one I’ve really liked since ‘Bedazzled’ with Peter Cook and Dudley Moore.

In terms of Rot In Hell, does that humor ever find its way into the lyrics?

Aside from the occasional wry comment or sly dig in our earlier material, not really. The band has a specific lyrical focus and it’s one of the few things I do take seriously.

Before I let you go, which UK bands should we all keep an ear out for?

I would encourage the former colonies to look out for releases by our friends in Wayfarer, Moloch, Closure, Mob Rules, and Drainland. Ugly music — truly a product of its time.

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