To write the songs that would become 'Be Ready', the second album by Dennis Hopper Choppers (DHC), Ben Nicholls holed up in a house in the desert just outside Tabernas in the South of Spain. There, on a previous visit during an evening of Ducados smoke and Brandy, a family member told Ben the story of a friend of hers who had been murdered by her own son, leaving an empty house whose ownership was in limbo.
Self-released in 2008, Ben's debut album 'Chop' saw him as a one-man-band, simultaneously playing guitar, bass drum, high hat, organ bass pedals, vox-organ and a 1969 Fender Dual Showman amplifier originally designed for Dick Dale. Described by Glasvegas' James Allan as his favourite album of the year.
No longer riding solo, 'Be Ready' The 12 track album produced by Ben Hillier sees Ben enlisting a host of musicians including full-time members Nat Woodcock on Vox organ and John Greswell on viola and mandolin.
Those who got the call included the skronk baritone sax of Pete Wareham from Acoustic Ladyland, Brian Eno sidekick Leo Abraham’s guitar atmospherics and Anthony Rossomandos' (valves seized from years of abuse) trumpet.