Five Minutes With: Hamilton Rock Band The Dirty Nil

The Dirty Nil, Ontario’s rock ‘n’ roll torchbearers, have emerged with their fourth album, Free Rein to Passions, and it’s a return to form for the Juno Award-winning trio. After experimenting with some smoother, more radio-friendly sounds on 2021’s Fuck Art, the Nil promptly returned to the studio and got back to the basics of what their band is about at its core—thrashy riffs, bashed-out drums, and levels-to-the-max volume. “Fuck Art had a lot of singing on it. There were not a lot of parts where you could just jam out on riffs,” says frontman Luke Bentham. “Free Rein to Passions is a bit of a nastier record where we didn’t sweat the small insignificant details. If it sounded cool, we went with it.” The band pays homage to some of their loudest, gnarliest influences on Free Rein to Passions, with subtle nods to everything from Power Trip to the Jesus Lizard. The album is a palate cleanser for the Dirty Nil, and a reminder for them to stick to the fundamentals of rock to stay true to themselves. “What was it LCD Soundsystem said about trading in guitars for turntables and synthesizers?” Bentham laughs. “I’d say that’s unlikely for us.

The Dirty Nil
Photo by: Steph Montani


Kyle Fisher (The Dirty Nil)


Rock and Roll



# of Albums:


Latest Album:

Free Rein To Passions

Latest Single:

Am I The Menace?

Latest Video:

Favourite musician growing up:

John Bonham

Favourite musician now:

Neil Young

Guilty pleasure song:

Strokin’ by Clarence Carter

Live show ritual:

Nap, drum warm up and a shot of Jameson

Favourite local musician:

Danny Miles

EP or LP?

Beautiful Music

Early bird or night owl?

Night Owl

Road or studio?


Any shows or albums coming up?

Deluxe Edition of Free Rein To Passions came out on April 4th. On tour with Microwave, the Menzingers and the Gaslight Anthem this spring and summer

Where can we follow you?

Instagram | Facebook | TikTok


Rapid Fire Local Questions:

What is your favourite local restaurant?

The Capitol Bar or Nabil’s

What is your favourite street in your city and why?

James St. N because it has a lot of great pals with great stores

What is your favourite park in your city and why?

Bayfront Park because it is the perfect place to take a date and a bottle of wine in the summer

What is your favourite music venue in your city?

Bridgeworks and the Casbah

What is your favourite music store in your city?

Dr. Disc and Into the Abyss


About Joel Levy 2587 Articles
Editor-In-Chief at Toronto Guardian. Photographer and Writer for Toronto Guardian and Joel Levy Photography