The Hillary Watts Riot

The Hillary Watts Riot

 Kansas City, Missouri, USA

The Hillary Watts Riot plays "Freak Pop" - a genre best described as Hall & Oates meets Sonic Youth, spritzed with Devo's pheromones.

Hillary and her Drones celebrate the joy of tube tops, killer bees, dapper serial killers, and 1970's sci-fi cinema. There is no sanctuary from the groove.



In early 2010, Christian Hankel and Tommy Donoho were conceiving a new musical genre. Pulling on musical influences ranging from Sonic Youth, Devo, King Crimson, and James Brown, but guided by a love of the smooth sounds of Hall & Oates, Cher, and Hanson, they mapped out a new territory they called "Freak Pop."

While they were both seasoned performers, they knew that it required a special type of person to front a Freak Pop band. They quickly decided upon their mutual friend, Hillary Watts. One part hilarious, one part insane, and all parts sexy, Hillary had all the parts necessary to make Freak Pop a reality.

And so was born The Hillary Watts Riot. Hillary's unique view of the world, coupled with Tommy's and Christian's musical experimentation, caused many strange and delightful songs to come into being.


The Hillary Watts Riot is loud, sexy, and brazenly odd. They play a style of music they call "Freak Pop" - humorous, absurd, and often sexually-charged lyrics, funk-inspired dance rhythms, dirty synth lines, and lots of experimentation and noise.

Looking like a cross between a 1980's Pat Benatar and a prom queen, Hillary Watts fronts a band of nameless, jumpsuited Drones. Together, they create an audiovisual playground that entices the audience like a stranger with candy.


Hard grooves, off-kilter rhythms, and sonic explosions underscore tales of the odd done by the strange: killer bees on a rampage; hirsute, gun-toting cadillac drivers; funky odes to tube tops; bubble boys in love. The Kansas City Star has this to say on the subject:

"The first single off the band’s debut EP, 'A/S/L,' boasts perhaps the funkiest bass line in Kansas City. 'Tube Top' is a groovy, loungey song that moves into a Blondie-esque break, maintaining an unconventional but superior sense of musicianship throughout."


Tube Top

Written By: Donoho, Hankel, Moreno, Watts, Easterday

don't want no girlie in a woolie sweater
it makes me surly when i surely try to pet her
don't want no honey in a linen dickie
i pay good money to stroke my little chickie

so if you love me you'd better give me all your heart
oh if you love me you know you got to dress the part

don't want no booty in a gansta hoodie
it makes me moody when i need to love my cutie
don't want my packet in a North Face® jacket
i just can't hack it when the lord moves me to smack it

so if you love me you'd better give me all your heart
oh if you love me you know you got to dress the part

tube top
up top
what ya got?
tube top

tube top
up top
ya can’t stop
tube top

don't want my biscuit in a leather vest, now
i just can’t risk it, gotta get it off your chest, now
you wanna be my hoochie? mama, lose the Gucci®
i got some muffin toppin’ stuffin’, say, “coochie coochie”

so if you love me you'd better give me all your heart
oh if you love me you know you got to dress the part


Written By: Donoho, Hankel, Moreno, Watts

black boots, white lies

hear you knocking on my door
hear your feet across the floor
black boots, white lies

listen for the air I breathe
you'll know what I really need
black boots, white lies

[kiss me on the dark back porch
give me death or give me a torch
black boots, white lies

you'll know when I want some more
I won't say no like the girl before
black boots, white lies

I went to the chi-o house
they were watching danger mouse

keep me down until I beg
tuck your man between your legs
black boots, white lies

now's the time to take a stand
driver of metallic sand
black boots, white lies

I went to the chi-o house
they were watching danger mouse


Written By: Donoho, Hankel, Watts, Moreno

hairy cadillac driver
you must have come from a far away land
with your gun rack & your fuzzy knuckled hand

hairy cadillac driver
why did you choose a metallic color blue
Your hat is camo and your jacket is too

hairy cadillac driver
now if i was the blatant judging type
i’d say you probably beat up on your wife

hairy cadillac driver
with a bench seat for your lady to sit near
fit three more and still have room for the beer

you’ve got magical stuff going on inside that car
i don’t know what you’re doing or exactly who you are

Killer Kind

Written By: Watts, Donoho, Hankel, Moreno

woke up at a quarter to two and I went outside
those bees were waiting for me
the killer kind

they float around like clouds in the sky
those bees will get your life
the killer kind

they’re floating in the sky

they killed my lover so I'll take a chance
they’ll kill your brother too so you may as well just dance
the killer kind

black and yellow and small and sweet
we can’t be sure they don’t eat meat
the killer kind

they’re floating in the sky

Slap Slap

Written By: Donoho, Hankel, Watts, Moreno, B. Hankel

her name is aja
she's a cat, a little cat
she is a rag doll
fifty dollars where it's at

and now she shake me
oh yeah she shake me
she no forsake me
oh yeah she shake me

his name is ya ya
and he rise up from the dead
he pull the moon down
and he wear it on his head

he got a pitchfork
from his youth down on the farm
and he can use it
yeah, he can use

and now he shake me
oh yeah he shake me
he no forsake me
you know he shake me

put a little lovey in my cup
put a little kissy in my cup
put a little slap slap in my cup
and shake me up

my name is sheba
and i'll
teach you how to fly
just lay your head back
and you close your eyes

and then i shake you
oh yeah i shake you
i no forsake you
and then i shake you


Released April 2012, Money Wolf Music

Set List

The Killer Kind
Slap Slap
Black Boots, White Lies
God Feathered My Hair
The Boy in the Bubble
Tube Top
Vitamins & Exercise
Glitter Pants
Squid Bone