Getting to Know: The Hook-Line Riot


In this edition of Getting to Know, we get introduced to The Hook-Line Riot, a melodic punk act from the UK who has been compared to the likes of Face to Face and Hot Water Music. If you are in an up and coming band that would like to partake in a Getting to Know feature, contact to receive the questionnaire and instructions. Thanks!

The-Hook-Line-Riot-1Band Name: The Hook-Line Riot
Band Members: Rob (vocals, lead guitar), Tom S (vocals, rhythm guitar), Jonny (bass, backups), Tommy B (drums), and Paddy (Hammond).
Years Active: 3 Years
City of Origin: Cheltenham, UK

Who are you and what do you do?
“We are The Hook-Line Riot and we play heartfelt punk rock with choruses to make your lungs explode and throat bleed…”

In 100 words or less, tell us how your band has gotten to this point.
“We just play the kind of music we love. I think that really shows in our sound and hopefully comes across to the people who watch us live and listen to our album. We have been lucky enough to play some awesome shows with the likes of Face To Face, Swingin Utters, Cobra Skulls, Dead to me, Street Dogs and The Flatliners, to name a few. We have just brought out our first video for the track “Waiting Room Exit” and our debut album Sirens.”

What is your latest release and how would you best describe it to someone who hasn’t heard your band?
“We have just released our debut album, Sirens. This is available through our Big Cartel shop and on iTunes/Google Play. We have been described as sounding like old school Face to Face and Hot Water Music. We play melodic punk rock and have a Hammond organ player.”

When making an album, which aspect of the process do you put the most time into and why?
“Rob and Tom do most of the song writing within the band. They normally just take a bunch of ideas to practice and we work over the songs and all add our own little parts to it. We click well as a band and all really enjoy writing new music…this really helps the process. It’s a really awesome feeling to take a bunch of songs you have put your blood, sweat and tears in to and hearing them come together in the studio.”

the-hook-line-riot-3What is the best part about your band and why?
“I think the best part of our band is we all really love what we are doing. It takes a lot of time and energy being in a small band with little reward. It’s all worth it when you release your first music video, debut album, or when someone tells you how much they like your music.”

What makes your band unique from the rest?
“Well, I think the fact we have an organ player makes us stand apart from a lot of our peers. We put a lot of heart and soul into our lyrics – we sing about real-life situations, such as heartbreak and the general ups and downs of life. We think lyrics should be something people can listen and relate to.”

How does your band survive the challenges of touring/gigging?
“It’s hard work managing family/work and playing gigs. We play as much as we can as a band. It’s really just a matter of putting as much in to gigging and the band as you can…making sure you have the time to work. Small bands still need to work full-time to pay the bills and support their families.”

Would you rather be critically-acclaimed; rich and famous; or an under-the-radar band with a dedicated fan base?
“Every band wants to make a living out of the music they do, but we feel it’s much more important to have a loyal and dedicated fan base. Bands like NOFX, The Flatliners, Face To Face and The Bouncing Souls have managed to maintain and grow their fan base without compromising the music style that made you like them in the first place. All bands change over time. It’s really just a matter of maintaining a strong original sound to keep new people interested in your band, as well as making sure you don’t alienate the people who have supported you from the start.”

If you’d have to compare your band to another one out there, living or dead, who would it be and why?
“We don’t really compare ourselves to any other bands but others have described us as sounding like Face to Face, Hot Water Music and The Replacements, which is obviously awesome and very flattering. We are just trying to do our own thing and hopefully others will like it as much as us.”

Which band/musician would you like to share many drinks with? What would you talk about?
Rob: “I would pick Joe Strummer. The Clash has been a big part of my life growing up. Joe Strummer was a legend. I would ask him what it was like to be part of the first wave of punk rock and the influence he has had on myself and a shit load of other awesome bands.”

the-hook-line-riot-2Tom S: “It would have to be Dave Grohl. I just think that dude would be really fun to hang out with. There are probably a million things I would like to say to him, but when he turned up it would probably play out like this: (Tom) ‘Holy fuck it’s Dave Grohl!’ (Dave) ‘Yeah that’s me.’ (Tom) ‘You’re fucking cool, I love the Foo Fighters.’ (Dave) ‘Thanks Man, you want a whisky?’ (Tom) ‘Hells Yeah!’”

Jonny: “I would say Tony Sly. I still feel sad hearing his music, so it would have been great to shake the dude’s hand and tell him how awesome I think NUFAN are and how much their music means to so many people. But, the conversation would probably end up more like Tom’s conversation with Dave Grohl.”

Paddy: “Johnny Cash, I would ask him about the inspiration behind his lyrical stories and try and convince him how a Hammond organ would Improve his sound.”

Tommy B: “It would have to be Elvis Presley. I would ask him to teach me some killer dance moves, then maybe instead of a drum solo, I could have a dance-off.”