Electro, punk collective Post Punk Podge & The Technohippies talk about the new EP, their image and Limerick’s growing inclusive creative community.
DESCRIBED as a figment of punk and An Post’s imagination, Limerick’s Post Punk Podge & The Technohippies mix, punk, poetry, rap, krautrock and techno, creating a killer live show and a string of thought provoking and provocative tracks, all produced with a healthy dose of humour. Led by Post Punk Podge and his distinctive brown envelope, the group, all masked, have released EPs and once-off singles since 2017. PPP&TT have played gigs across the country and The Black Heart in Camden Town, played festivals, KnockanStockan, Electric Picnic, Body & Soul and Townlands Carnival.
The group has just released its latest EP, ‘Post Millenium Tension’.
Podge has played classical violin since age eight and played bass in punk bands since his teens. In that mix of rage and melodic musicality combined with a strong social conscious, Podge creates songs about the human condition about living in Ireland, the good, the bad and downright unjust.
“You wake up and see the news or read an article, so you’re pissed off so you write a song,” says Podge.
“Using negative energy in a positive way is what I’m trying to do. I will more than likely sympathise with the person that is being mistreated.”
Released in 2018, ‘Home is Where The Heart Is’ raised money for homeless charity Novas. ‘Never Coming Home’ focused on domestic violence and all proceeds went to ADAPT House. 2017’s ‘An Lucht Siúil’ raised awareness of the living conditions for the travelling community.
In the original/ alternative music business where there is very little state support or funding, it is particularly admirable when these artists give back as generously as they can from tight and more often non existent budgets.
PPP&TT and part of the growing and exciting creative community developing out of Limerick. With the help of the likes of Music Generation Limerick and young collectives such as DIYLK, Prescription and Unscene there is an energetic vibe among the creatives, the sound engineers, the video makers and visual artists where they all help each other out.
“There is a lot of inclusiveness and support between the punk and hip hop scene”, says Podge.
“A lot of people see music as a great outlet for them in terms of helping their mental health. This has been touched upon by these artists.
“There isn’t a whole lot to do – You have to fill it with what your passion is really. That seems to be happening with music, making videos and creating new songs.”
The new five track EP is a good example of what a live PPP&TT show is all about. New single ‘Full Time Mad Bastard’ questions what now is the new role for men in the post millennium era.
Another track may cause some to cringe and shake their heads at its title, it is called ‘Stab City’s Burning’. The track is a fists-in-the-air punk anthem that sets out to dispel the old myths about the Treaty City.
“It is actually a positive song about what is going on in creative arts and music,” explaines Podge
As for the masks and hidden identities with this group, it is all accidental. Podge contributed words and bass on ‘The Minute Particulars’ EP released by Limerick producer/beatmaker Naive Ted back in 2017. Naive Ted wears a wrestling mask for all publicity and live gigs and within this collaboration Post Punk Podge was created.
“I was working with Naive Ted and he wears a wrestling mask and we recorded some songs. He said I want you to do some gigs with me but you will have to wear a mask during the gig because that is the whole shtick he has with a wrestling mask. We came up with the name as a joke!”
Podge has created a persona around the Post Punk Podge image and the rest of the band got on board, also covering their faces.
It works brilliantly in videos and live and has given the gang creative freedom to amp up their shows in character.
“It makes it easier to go up in front of a crowd and forces people to listen to the lyrics more!” suggests Podge.
The PPP character is meant to be surreal and funny. The brown envelope on his head is a twist on the idea of the brown envelope, “a symbol of corruption and deception.”
Straight after our chat Podge and his Technohippies are off to make a video for their track ‘Full Time Mad Bastard’ filmed by Graham Patterson (who worked on Somewhere in Ireland and Jinx Lennon videos).
The track takes a side swipe at the hypocrisy and ridiculousness of being a man in 21st century Ireland, but all Podge is hoping for is to finish the job without a trip to A&E!
“I’m going to be in the back of a van trying to sing a song while sitting on an office chair while my friend drives the van around a car park. I hope I don’t come out with any broken bones!” Laughs.
“It is all about the struggle. That’s what feeds the art and the music at the end of the day.”
Post Punk Podge & The Technohippies play Pharmacia on Saturday April 6.
‘Full Time Mad Bastard’ can now be streamed on YouTube in all its vertigo inducing glory. The five track EP ‘Post Millenium Tension’ is available now on Bandcamp.