Oi Polloi are a punk band from Edinburgh, Scotland. Their name comes from the Greek term "hoi polloi".
Oi Polloi was formed in 1981 when the members of the band were around 14 years old. The high school they attended
had charity "rock concerts" where the students could perform in from time to time. While many of the students were interested
in punk rock, these events were dominated by top 40 cover bands. Oi Polloi was formed out of a
desire to see some punk rock at these events.
Not long after their formation, Oi Polloi sent a demo tape to Sounds, a magazine that reviewed demo tapes. After the review of
their tape appeared, hundreds of people were writing to the band requesting a copy. It was through this that they discovered
a whole underground, do it yourself, scene. Oi Polloi started to play more and more gigs and it soon became "too fun to stop".
After a couple more demo tapes, Oi Polloi released their first vinyl recording, "Resist the Atomic Menace," in 1986. One year later the
band released their first full length LP, "Unite and Win,"on Oi! Records. Then, in 1988, the band began to tour abroad.
Over the years Oi Polloi has toured extensively throughout Europe and North America. Oi Polloi continued to release music from time to time,
with their next full length studio albums appearing in 1990 ("In Defence of our Earth") and 1999 ("Fuaim Catha"). They have also released seven
inch EP's about every second year. Oi Polloi has made an effort to keep all their material available and many albums, such as "Fight Back", are compilations of old material from records that are no longer available. The band also released live recordings regularly, most recently in
2003 with "Alive and Kicking."
Some of the earliest musical influences on Oi Polloi were the Cockney Rejects, Blitz, and the 4-Skins. Shortly after the formation of the band Discharge became an influence, musically and lyrically. The current sound of the band still carries a taste of the early Oi! influence, but is generally much faster and harder. Their most recent releases contain just a hint of metal and most would now describe them as crust punk rather than Oi!.
Lyrically, Oi Polloi speak almost exclusively about politics. Environmentalism, animal rights, and anti-racism / anti-fascism are some of the key issues in their songs. However, not all Oi Polloi songs are political. "Anarcho Pie", for example, features a recipe for a tasty vegan treat.
Over the years Oi Polloi has had quite a number of line up changes. Ex-members of the band currently play with The Exploited, Disorder, and
The Bus Station Loonies, to name a few. The current line up of the band is:
Deek - Vocals (original member)
Ricky - Guitar
Calum - Bass
Cam - Drums
Despite touring for up to nine months in a year, the members of Oi Polloi do not consider themselves to be a professional band. All members of
the band are very busy outside of the band with jobs, volunteer work, and studies. Even while touring the band keeps busy with other things, such as
Full Length Releases (LP's, CD's)
Unite and Win
In Defence of our Earth
Outraged by the Atomic Menace
Live in Berlin
Six of the Best
Outraged by the System
Alive and Kicking
Skins'N'Punks Volume Two
Mad as Fuck
Singles, EP's etc.
Resist the Atomic Menace
Right to Choose
Let the Boots Do the Talking
Tapes (Demo, live, etc)
Destroi the System
Live at the Z Club
R'lyeh Rising Fanzine #4