“If you can make a record that feels like you have invented rock ’n’ roll, that’s a great feeling”: The Hives on how a need for speed – and the mystery of the elusive Randy Fitzsimmons – helped inspire them to make a comeback record for the ages

Nicholaus Arson performs onstage with the Hives
(Image credit: Oliver Halfin)

Rock ’n’ roll is an art form of myth and illusion. Of the latter you have that strange quirk of physics and biology whereby the more you turn up the volume, the faster it can feel. Of the former, well, pick your own favourite. 

The Hives, the biggest garage rock band in the world, and principally responsible for the revival of the garage sound at the turn of the 21st century, traffic in both. But it’s myth that sets the scene for their long-awaited studio album, The Death Of Randy Fitzsimmons.

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Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to publications including Guitar World, MusicRadar and Total Guitar. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.