Monday Feature: Johnny Foreigner

Let me tell you about the greatest band you’ve never heard of.  Johnny Foreigner is a Birmingham, England based indie rock band that, for once, isn’t just trying to soundtrack every nap I’ve ever taken.  They also happen to be COMING TO THE SETT NOVEMBER 16th, so pay attention.

I suppose you’d like a description, yeah?  Well the band’s music is a bit bipolar.  One side is filled with hyperactive guitar riffs and lyrics that are yelped out like there are only three minutes left until the world ends.  A perfect example of this is perhaps their most famous song, “Our Bipolar Friends“.  Frontman Alexei Berrow and bassist Kelly Southern trade lyric lines back and forth over virtuosic guitar lines, while drummer Junior Elvis Washington Laidley plays drums and keyboard at the same time.

The other pole of Johnny Foreigner’s musical spectrum is best shown on an EP called There When You Need It.  It’s filled with mostly acoustic songs that would fit more in a playlist full of Elliott Smith and Bright Eyes than it would with punk music.  Doesn’t matter though, because the EP is fantastic.  In between these two types of music you can find songs like PS, Not Soon Enough, which combine slower, sadder elements of their acoustic songs with overdriven guitars they otherwise use.

They write like they mean it, and they play like it might be their last night on earth.  How is that unappealing?  They even like vocal harmonies!  As a punk band!

It’s been a very busy year for my favorite band.  Nearly a year ago, November 7th, they released their third album Johnny Foreigner vs. Everything.  Since then, they’ve added a second guitarist, their friend/visual artist Lewes Herriot, announced and begun only their second America tour, and released a new EP titled NAMES, which you can find over at their bandcamp page.  One song directly lifts a line from “Airplanes” by B.o.B.  That has to be a little convincing, right?

Which reminds me of their lyrics.  They’re all about girls or family or Birmingham.  They’re basically all relatable on some level.  Just trust me.

Just listen to them.


but i worked it out: the last however many months of fleeting friendships, goodnights and good nights, on that beach under those stars i would have spilled everything to the first pretty face i fell across. and, at least i picked the prettiest

“Things We Should’ve Left On The Beach”

“With Who, Who and What I’ve Got”

And because it’s close enough to Christmas, “Santa Fucking Claus”


One thought on “Monday Feature: Johnny Foreigner

  1. Pingback: Friday Night In The Sett: Johnny Foreigner w/ Nervous Passenger | WUD Music

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