Robber frontman Oli Hopes on the feel-bad hit of the Autumn

By Danger Coolidge 
Unbelievably Bad Editor


Robber will release what’s sure to be the feel-bad hit of the Autumn when their debut self-titled LP drops on April 29 via NGM Records.

The Sydney five-piece has been bumming punks out for close to two years now with a noxious blend of hardcore, rock ’n’ roll, black metal and acid reflux.

Their six-song cassette, Studio/Live/Rehearsal, brought hopelessness to the hopeful. Their video for sluggish murderpunk dirge “Grease Pit” made us question our sexuality and life choices. Their forthcoming album will be one of the best Australian records of 2017.

UB gets into the grease pit with vocalist Oli Hopes…

Who’s in Robber and what do they do?
Brent’s a lift mechanic, Al’s a bicycle courier, I tell crap jokes… Nah, basically Brent’s on lead guitar, Al’s on rhythm, Mike does bass and Otis is the drummer. Apart from vocals/lyrics, I write 90-percent of the riffs/songs, show ’em to the guys, they tell me what stinks and what’s good and come up with structures from there. The band wouldn’t be what it is without the full line-up. Mike’s bass lines are sick and heighten the songs heaps I reckon, Al’s filthy Year 6 style playing is just the right amount of poo and ugliness, and Otis’s drumming gives it the intensity it often lacks due to my wimpy riffs.

Live At Hideaway Bar:

You’ve all been in bands, been around, know what I mean, nudge, nudge? What was the impetus to get together with these people and make this type of music?
Firstly, big ups to Hannah (Death Church), Jaz (Paradise Daily Records/ex-Rangoons) and Fran (Dark Horse) who all filled in/jammed with us on drums from the early days. We’re not spring chickens anymore, apart from Otis, who continues to make us feel old talking about the latest drugs and abbreviations (what does YTB mean?). So we’ve been around, played in a few bands here and there. Mike famously “ruined hardcore” with Taipan, which I don’t think we’ll ever live up to, but it’s nice to know we have some qualified shitheads in the band. Al made plenty of people feel unwell in Whores and MOB. Brent’s been musically panel-beating heads with Fuck Oath, Sluggard, Beer Corpse, Ratbag, etc. And Otis was the original drummer for Dispossessed. Unfortunately, there’s been issues since leaving and the last thing I wanna do is fan any flames, so big ups to Dispossessed and everything they’re doing and hopefully we can play with them in the future. In terms of wanting to make this type of music, I can’t speak for the rest of the guys, but for me (and I’ll try be quick), basically I was fuckin’ bored of the metal scene. I started off in black and death metal bands from about age 16 but eventually just thought all the bands were Darkthrone rip-offs or sounded like they were on Nuclear Blast (shit). Metalheads were all becoming wimpier and lamer. Still a few mad cunts around, but the bands were shit and I didn’t wanna play straight punk, so I tried to make a punk/hardcore band with black metal-style riffs. Combine that with a love for Three 6 Mafia and Nasenbluten and yada yada, Robber happened.

Is there any room for humour in what Robber does?
Plenty of room. It’s pretty chat and depressing humour but I like it. I guess it’s pretty typical in Australia to be bleak and frank about life and reality but with a humorous spin on it, like the movie Chopper.

“Grease Pit” video:

Who made the video for “Grease Pit”?
It was edited by my good friend Dane McCusker who has made plenty of mad shit in his time. I filmed it all with the big and bad Dave Pound. He’s the real deal, man – roided-up, stripper, escort (yes, in the bum bum), pornstar, you name it. He’s done some grim shit I can tell you that. He fit the mood for “Grease Pit” so well, it was all totally natural. I just took him to Tigers Leagues Club, told him to bring a g-banger and pressed record. He needed no direction at all. The filthy animal was loving it; the shit he was talking about during filming was just total red-hot nonsense. I don’t wanna dog him too hard but his line of work is not for the faint-hearted. He has some stories. Maybe I can work them into some lyrics one day.

What different spots was the Studio/Live/Rehearsal tape recorded in?
The tape was a mix of live recordings, some rehearsal recordings, and a track off the forthcoming LP, which is being released through NGM Records (Sick Rick’s label). We got Luke from Teuton to make the tapes for us ’cos he has a tape label, but we just self-released it. We took ’em down to Maggotfest last year and they went pretty quick so Brent started making more himself. Contact if you want one and hopefully there are some left, but keep an eye out for the full-length. It’s just self-titled but NGM Records is the go to grab one. (plug! plug! plug!)

How would you describe the taste of fire extinguisher to someone who has never experienced one before?
Salty and cancerous. Mind you, there are many different types of fire extinguisher, as your local fire warden or graffiti shithead will tell you.

Sample Robber’s self-titled LP:

And download the Robber tape for free, you scum:

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