Ezra Bang and Hot Machine
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Ezra Bang and Hot Machine


Band Alternative Pop


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"New Blood: Ezra Bang & Hot Machine"

"Electro/ hip-hop / punkers Ezra Bang and Hot Machine claim to come from Heartbreak City (we've all been there), New York and Sapporo (I prefer Pabst Blue Ribbon personally), and there's no denying their phat, pulsating rhythms, thumping basslines, and shouts. 'White Power' is George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic meets CSS and early Public Enemy raises it's head on 'Pussy' so much that you're just waiting for them to shout 'Fight The Power'." - Artrocker Magazine - London, UK

"New Band Of The Day"

"They look amazing on paper, this five-strong boy-girl collective who use an array of samples, vintage synthesisers and distortion pedals to create a "revolutionary" brand of "guerrilla funk". They've toured with Public Enemy, they call what they do "no rave", which is quite smart, and "trash hop", which is only marginally less so, and they've been described as having "the energy of a thermo-nuclear hip-hop meltdown" that "attacks the listener from the very first moment". They are, because of all this, immediately impressive..." - The Guardian Online - London, UK

"Ezra Bang & Hot Machine - Interview"

Ezra Bang and Hot Machine are a 5 person boy/girl act that are currently threatening East London, although Ezra himself hails from the ‘hood in New York. Frontman rapper Ezra - who refused to give his real name for the purpose of this interview – is accompanied by bassist Sara Belle, drummer Ralph Phillips and synth players Linus Jackson and Mio Kuromori. They recently stirred trouble as the support act to Public Enemy when they toured the UK earlier this year. Rather than use the predictable PE comparison, what I want to warn you is that Ezra is a camped-up, sexually charged, punk-rapping ear-assault who champions big accessories and small pants. His exercise regime includes a backstage rowing machine and climbing on venue PA systems, and when I interviewed him he was hanging out at his mum’s flicking through baby photos.

When did Ezra Bang arrive on this earth, and how? Did he take over your soul in the middle of the night?
Yeah! It was a bit like that scene in Return of the Living Dead where they bust open that cannister and the mist starts to cover the whole grave yard, awakening these flesh eating beasts. Actually, real talk: Ezra was always in me, even as kid there was a split side to me. It wasn’t until I was in college that I gave it the name Ezra. Apparently Ezra means “son of Allah” in Islam.

Does Ezra Bang let you do things you wouldn’t normally do?
Definitely. And no. There’s a side of me that I’ve had to accept IS actually me, that everyday has to stop himself from doing certain things. I always feel on the verge of being found out as a phony.. like “my mask of sanity is beginning to slip” Patrick Bateman style. I got arrested a few times when I was younger, police cars aren’t really built for comfort, backstage is alot nicer.

You’re currently in the process of recording your album. Can you give ‘Sup a run-down on what to expect?

Can you pick some lyrics from one of your tracks and explain what they’re about?
Neo fascists, skin heads, whatever are redundant now. Their seed has already been sown, the hate that hate created has taken over. The reaction to white power has been an evil that now has nothing to do but thrash about and seeth until it’s fury is quenched. There’s no need for white supremacists to march, the evil has been spread and now lives inside there very ones they were marching against.

Until recently you were living, breathing and sleeping Hot Machine’s music, but you’ve involved the band in writing the past couple of new tracks. Has that brought a new direction to the sound you’re making?
For sure. It always helps to have someone else’s input. I’ve gotten to a place where I’m confident enough in the vision/sound of what I’m trying to achieve that additional influence can only be a good thing.

Your music is highly charged, there’s rampant swearing and it generally sounds as though you’re about to explode at any minute. I’ve also seen shots of you wearing a C-word t-shirt. What does your mum think about that? Do you worry about alienating anyone who isn’t a gutter-mouth hedonist?
I’m actually sitting in my mom’s house in upstate New York. I think she just kinda laughs and shakes her head. I grew up in church, there’s a lot of energy there… energy that can be channeled and expressed in all kinds of ways. I spent alot of time as a kid bottling things up and not confronting or saying things. I don’t worry now about alienating anyone now, I really don’t fucking care, no one worries about alienating me. I find celebrity culture and reality tv shows in Britian and the US gross and depraved, but ain’t no fuckin body worried about offending my sensibilities, so fuck em.

You’ve also got this ultra camp thing going where you wear mega-chains, take off your shirt and do a lot of gyrating. Do you see yourself as a sex-symbol?
Nah, I’m just a song and dance man. I see what I do as antisex. If it was 30 years ago, I’d be in a gold lame’ suit and strutting with a 10 piece band and spitting in young kids’ faces. Or R. Kelly pissing on his co-workers’ kids in a pool. I don’t have to now, everyone knows it’s fucked.

You pack a pretty intense live show, and you’ve got a penchant for climbing things on stage. I heard you’ve been busted for scaling speakers at a gig. What would be your ultimate, dream stage set up?
Yeah! That was one of the Public Enemy shows, but there’s been loads of times.. I did this show with Pop Levi in Liverpool in the Barfly and the speaker stacks were F U C K I N G amazing! Just make sure I can have space to throw myself around and I’m happy, but in some ways the best shows are the crammed ones where you can barely move.

I’ve tried wearing sunglasses at night and I end - Sup Magazine - NYC

"Turn Ons"

Ezra Bang And The Hot Machine
'Pussy Got 9 Lives'

"They look every bit the East London stylistas but the Machine led by Ezra Bang rail against fashion children living in the ghetto on this fervent mash up of punk, rave and hip hop." - Attitude Magazine - Single Review

"Ezra Bang & Hot Machine - Interview"

Walking away in an unbelievable daze, SUPERSWEET can’t fathom how we’ve spent almost three effortless hours with the five-piece band Ezra Bang and Hot Machine. Arriving with premature oomph, early birds bassist Sarah Belle and synth player Linus Jackson get cozy and chuckle about Ralph Phillips’ determined stage invasions, even unintentionally two-finger swearing to a Public Enemy crowd, after their war speech was lyrically delivered. Continuing to joke about the unavoidable tardiness of other members, the duo giggle how endearingly slow second synth player Mio Kuromori walks; Linus even caught Ralph pushing her down a NYC street! In strutting form, polished front man Ezra Bang arrives wearing his trademark bondage, a hardy chain with gold lock, and puts a game face on for our delving questions, only after he’s revealed who is his most proud gig punter: his mum!

SS: After supporting big names from Public Enemy, Ladytron, has there ever been a point where you have felt a little bit overwhelmed?
Ezra: No! (laughs) While we’ve made a lot of friends among other bands, it’s all happened quite quickly and the five of us have only been together since September! We did this VICE party: their second birthday party, to put us out there and they treat us really well. The same happened in Germany, but then we come back to London, we do shows that fail in some ways…
Sarah: The culture between breaking bands here in London and in Germany is really different. There, if you’re an artist: you are an artist. In London, it’s a bit hit and miss. We’ve rocked up the venue and say “You told us to be here for sound check, where do you want us unpacking?” and they’ll turn around and say: “Well people are eating dinner, they’ve just ordered some food, so when they’ve finished”.
Linus: At one gig there were just four mics! We use at least 10 mics!

SS: What best describes your music?
Ezra: Iggy Pop and the Stooges, with synths and gay disco!

SS: Ralph – You owned up to being the “stage invader” of Jarvis Cocker’s set mentioned in The Times Interview. Did you ever get to meet him after your intrusion?
Ralph: No, no no! I felt like I should keep myself anonymous at that point. Perhaps I’ll meet him in a better light.

SS: So did you just blag it then?
Ralph: I just thought “This is my mission!” I went up to the Jarvis manager; it was quite a smooth operation really…

SS: What did you say, I heard you took his mic?
Ralph: I didn’t go up with any ideas in mind, he basically took the champagne off me and handed me the mic, so I thought I better say something worth mentioning! I think he’s a really down to earth guy, that’s why I have a lot of respect for him. Then I went back to the guys finished off the champagne and got my bus home.
Linus: You were pretty trashed by then…
Ralph: Oh what!?
Linus: You left saying, “See you guys later, you’re all twats!

SS: You have been seen wearing trademark outfits, including your chain – is this a literal statement for your music?
Ezra: Ha! There’s no idea. I stole it! I thought “Fuck…Bling”! This is my thing. This will never go out of fashion!
Ralph: We actually specialize in accessories in this band. Rather than be fashionable, it’s more a statement of details. When we get changed backstage it’s always about applying details…

SS: Did you make that? (Ralph wears alphabet blocks around his neck)
Ralph: Yeah…
Linus: He also made this melted pair of Ray Bans they looked so cool, they were melted in the oven, and he comes down the stairs with a fragile chain on it.
Ralph: We are gonna start a side project. Hot Machine Accessories.
Ezra: Or Melt-Ban Ha!

SS: You are explicit within your music but do you ever restrain some feelings within your music?
Ezra: No, there’s no point in doing it. If you grow up in the world, especially in the US, it’s become so politically correct. My mum is preacher’s kid so we went to a church religiously; again there’s certain things you can’t say. There’s got to be some fucking place, where you can say exactly where you want and there’s no censorship. You are just trying to get to the truth of the matter, not universal truth, just human truth. That’s beyond political correctness and any of the bullshit. I never intentionally want to be explicit or vulgar, but life is explicit and vulgar on a daily basis, so why not? You can have bombs falling all the time and but you still have people writing and singing about girls in clubs.

SS: How would you like to be remembered in 50 years?
Ralph: Same way Che Guevara is remembered. Fidel Castro,
Ezra: Stalin…
Ralph: In the history books…
Linus: Wikipedia!
Ezra: They’ve got a course now in film school, called Post-Tarintino Film, so I reckon you could study Post-Ezra Bang Hot Machine.
Sarah: Definitely not rocking up to Twickenham and still trying to bring it, after doing years of absolute shit music and just still coasting on.
Ezra: Haha! Yeah The Revival Tour (starts singing) “Pu - Supersweet Magazine


- "White Power/Pussy Got 9 Lives" (AA side single) - Released 13th July 2009, Gold Swine Ltd - received radio play on BBC Radio 1, Radio 6 & NME Radio

- "What U Can't Kill U Must Envy"
(limited 7"vinyl/download)
Released 20th April, 2009 Gold Swine Ltd - received airplay on BBC Radio 6



"Ezra Bang and Hot Machine are a five member boy-girl collective who utilize an array of samples, vintage synthesizers and distortion pedals to make what the band have dubbed "guerilla funk". Led by Ezra, the New York-born grandson of a Pentecostal bishop, the band's history is one steeped in the concept of smoke and mirrors. At times antagonistic and violent, their past live shows venture from the sublime to the downright guttural.

Their riotous behavior on a European tour - resulting in Ezra being deported from Amsterdam and barred from entering the UK for 10 days - brought them to the attention of Public Enemy, who invited the band to support them on tour. With the addition of Sara Belle on bass and Japanese fashion student Mio Kuromori on synths, they're making the transition from a shambolic East London spectacle to a muscular, precision outfit that produces everything completely live. Long time collaborators Ezra Bang and Linus Jackson use a collection of analogue keyboards through stacks of amplifiers, while drummer Ralph Phillips plays a homemade kit, featuring a mounted metal trash bin."