They’re newly back from a European stint as guests of Enter Shikari; now
Hacktivist are heading out on their very first UK headline tour.
They play Brighton Audio on November 19 and Portsmouth’s Wedgewood Rooms on November 20.
It’s all exciting times, says bassist Josh Gurner.
“We have done the odd week or two, but this is our first full-length headline tour. We had a great time with Enter Shikari. We learnt a lot of things.”
To mark the occasion, they are reissuing their EP: “We did a limited release of it last year. We sold out earlier in the year, and now we are reissuing it with new artwork and extra tracks.”
As for the band itself, it started as a bedroom project for guitarist Tim when he left his last band: “He just started writing stuff on his own. It was when Ben and Jay got involved that it started to take on the sound that it is now. They came in as the two vocalists.”
The band launched around about the time of Wikileaks: hence the name: “The whole idea of Hacktivist is 21st-century non-violent protest. There is definitely a political undercurrent underlying a lot of our lyrics.
“A lot of it is our displeasure and outrage at the way things are run. There are a lot of things to be angry about in society at the moment.
“When you rap, it is often about personal experiences. Some of our experiences are about what it is like to be a young adult growing up in 2013. We are going through a second recession. It is hard for people to get by. We try to preach a positive message that we can all get through, but also it is about how did we get into this mess in the first place.”
Josh came into the band at the beginning of 2012.
“We are all from a little place called Milton Keynes. We are trying to bring Milton Keynes much more onto the map so that people say ‘Milton Keynes? Isn’t that where Hacktivist come from?’ rather than ‘Milton Keynes, oh yeah, the place with the concrete cows,’ It is not the most interesting or glamorous of places, but we are trying to do our bit.”
As for the music, Josh describes it as heavily groove based, with a heavy guitar style: “But the vocals are fast-paced in the Dizzee Rascal style: “We try to keep it sounding British. We are proud to be British. We don’t like the British rappers that try to sound American.”