Amsterdam Hang Youth consider themselves anarchist and punk. Before we link to their Dutch language lyrics in this post, an introduction.
The Dutch daily NRC journalist Frank Provoost had an interview with Abel van Gijlswijk. 31 years old, singer of Hang Youth.
The band name is broken English. What in Dutch is called ‘steenkolenengels’: literally: coal English. The word steenkolenengels is derived from uneducated Dutch sailors who used to go to Newcastle to bring coal to the Netherlands and spoke only broken English. Hang Youth is the broken English translation of Dutch ‘hangjongeren’, loitering young people.
Hang Youth have lyrics against Big Oil, the anti-vaxx industry, the housing crisis caused by gentrification, and more. They have a slogan: ‘Always kick upwards’ as opposed to kissing upwards’.
Van Gijlswijk says that his band plays in squats for zero pay. And is also invited to perform at the 2022 Pinkpop festival. That is the biggest, mostly non-punk, Dutch open air music festival.
I hope the Bureau Pinkpop organisation will treat Hang Youth better than my band in 1980. Bureau Pinkpop had hired a big hall in Venlo for a UK Subs concert. Can we open for them? we asked. No, we are not paying a support band’s travel costs, the bureau said. Then, UK Subs singer Charlie Harper generously paid the petrol for the small car of our bass player/female lead vocalist, so we could play in Venlo.
I have never met anyone with whom I agreed 100%. Also with Abel van Gijlswijk, I agree with much, but not all.
Still, the Dutch lyrics of Hang Youth are worth hearing. A blog post by a Dutch psychologist mentions them.
Here they are.
Click on the song titles to find the lyrics for individual songs.