Hoodlum Priest (musician)

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Hoodlum Priest
Hoodlum Priest.jpeg
Background information
Birth nameDerek Thompson
Also known asTechnietzsche
Surfers For Satan
OriginLondon, United Kingdom
GenresIndustrial, Trip hop, Classical music, Drum n Bass
Occupation(s)Programmer, Remixer, record producer
Bass guitar
Years active1989–present
LabelsZTT Records (1989–1994)
Concrete Productions (1994–1998)
Iris Light Records (1998-2000)
Associated actsSPK
The Cure
Apollo 440
MembersDerek Thompson (1989-present)
Past membersPaul Sevier (1990-1990;vocals)

Named after a 1960s movie, Hoodlum Priest is a name used by producer/multi instrumentalist and composer Derek Thompson, born of an Irish background but born and raised in London, the name later became his self-chosen moniker for his work as a producer and engineer, using hip-hop, industrial, and techno influences as the source of material for his sounds.


Often known for being an eccentric in interviews, he claimed to have been kicked out of the Maynooth Seminary after producing a Thesis proving that the Devil did in fact have "all the best tunes"[1] and later retiring from full-time employment at the age of 22,[2] his first major musical background through the late 1970s and 1980s was with avant-garde industrialists SPK, and he played a variety of instruments including bass, keyboards and the trumpet. He departed after founder member Graeme Revell took the group to what Thompson felt was too commercial of a direction. After leaving SPK, Thompson had done a very brief stint with the Cure (a position he got after apparently meeting Robert Smith in a bar who apparently asked him what colour was his bass guitar and Derek replied 'Black'),[3] he only played one show with The Cure, which was The Oxford Road Show in April, 1983.

With Hoodlum Priest[edit]

His initial goal with Hoodlum Priest, one of several musical projects he explored during the 1990s and beyond, was to draw in both film influences on his work—primarily via dialogue but also musically—and hip-hop with a specific goal of recruiting a London-based MC, he was introduced to rapper Paul Sevier, who had previously been known as Junior Gee, (whom had earlier success winning the London Rapping Championships and appeared on a handful of singles throughout 1983 and 1985 [4]) At a club performance in 1989 and after being offered a contract by ZTT after being featured on the License To Thrill soundtrack, the two worked together up until the album The Heart of Darkness. But with Sevier's apparent strong Christian background and Thompson's more free-thinking philosophy and darker musical approach eventually led to the MC's departure. During some time after the release of The Heart of Darkness, ZTT was bought out by Warner Bros, and the album deleted almost immediately upon its release by request of Warner Bros's Legal Department;[5] the band was later dropped by ZTT, due to later having a fallout about refusing to release a controversial song called 'Cop Killer' and being displeased that the label had no idea on how promote the band.[6][7] Thompson continued on his own, working on various sideprojects and interspersing his background work (occasionally with regular friend/callobrator Cliff Hewitt, a short-lived band called Black Radio and providing music for Television commercial) and continued to release occasional album releases such as 1994's Beneath the Pavement (which featured 2 tracks produced by Raymond Watts of KMFDM fame) and 1998's Hoodlum Priest, which featured former Gaye Bykers on Acid frontman and Pigface/Apollo 440 bandmember Mary Byker on vocals. After the release of the self-titled album, the group has been on hiatus. Recently, Derek became a member of Brighton's experimental music collective Spirit of Gravity and was last seen gigging as Komuso, which he described as an improvised unit, which featured guests who were given no information what to play on arrival to the stage, he designed the algorithm for the so-called "jazz limiters" used at Brighton's Spirit of Gravity improvised club night. They work in a similar fashion to sound level limiters (i.e. they cut the power to the pa when a threshold is reached) but they respond to the percentage of jazz detected in any performance, switching off the power if the level exceeds 23% jazz.

His last known Hoodlum Priest recording was "Blood on the Moon" for the closing credits of the Danish film The King is Alive directed by Kristian Levring.

Cop Killer Controversy[edit]

Derek created a track entitled "Cop Killer" (not related to the Body Count song Copkiller of the same name) ZTT refused and the record was later banned by the record label due to heavy use of various 'cop killer' samples (most notably from movies like RoboCop; it took 2 years to collect most of the samples) and due to a fear that this song would cause uproar; this song and the single "Caucasian" were banned, although some white labels of the records do exist.



  • Fatman (The Hoodlum Priest Fatboy Mix) and Menofearthereaper (The Concrete No Fee No Fear Mix) by Pop Will Eat Itself - Two Fingers My Friends! (1995)
  • Reaper (Hoodlum Priest Remix) by Apollo 440 - (Don't Fear) The Reaper (1995)
  • Father Cannot Yell (Pete Shelley/Black Radio Mix) (with Pete Shelley as part of Black Radio) by Can- Sacrilege (1997)
  • Glömd (Mercedes Cortina Mix) (also 2 other remixes of the song with Sly Diva) by Koop- Glömd (The Mixes) (1997)
  • Chickenbone (Surfers For Satan mix) and You (Hoodlum Priest mix) by LK- Chickenbone single (1997)
  • Rubycon Revisited by Tangerine Dream- Rubycon Revisted (????)

Other Appearances[edit]

  • 'Metal Dance' 12" (percussion, trumpet, keyboards) by SPK 1983
  • 'Maldoror Ceases to Exist' on the Dogs Blood Order album.
  • 'Sportster' on Spike (Works From B.E.A.S.T. - Volume 1)


  • The album Beneath The Pavement.. was only Limited to 1200 copies.
  • Derek is apparently obsessed with Surfing and started a 'British surf band' named Surfers for Satan. To continue his fascination with surfing, Derek added music to a little known cult surf movie named Pete And Deadly, he also starred alongside Pete Lee Wilson in this movie.
  • Deep Dance accompanied the opening sequence of the 1991 Neil Pryde windsurfing movie "Instant Replay".


  1. ^ taken from the history section of the HP website, last accessed 07-30-08 [1]
  2. ^ an interview with Derek, 1994 "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 4 February 2007.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link), URL last accessed 2006-12-08.
  3. ^ an interview with Derek, 1994 "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 4 February 2007.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link), URL last accessed 2006-12-08.
  4. ^ "Electro Rock "Review.[2]
  5. ^ taken from the history section of the HP website, last accessed 07-30-08 [3]
  6. ^ an Introduction to Iris Light Records, 1998 "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 15 November 2006. Retrieved 26 December 2006.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link), URL last accessed 2006-12-26
  7. ^ an interview with Derek, 1994 "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 4 February 2007.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link), URL last accessed 2006-12-08.

External links[edit]