As main songwriter and founding member of Kaiser Chiefs, Nick J.D. Hodgson already has an enviable record of global hits under his belt, including No. 1 single "Ruby and I Predict A Riot." Since leaving the band in 2012 he has written and produced for other artists, and has seen success in this new world with the likes of Mark Ronson, John Newman, Hurts and Ratboy. A solo career was not something Hodgson was even considering, as he explains: "It was a long time since I'd written a song just for myself... and then I wrote Thank You." It was written one night in Leeds when Hodgson was suffering from manﬂu and waiting for an email that never arrived about a track he had co-written for another artist.
It proved a pivotal moment in the making of Tell Your Friends, and was quickly followed by first single "Suitable" and "RSVP" in the same week: "I suddenly thought, OK, let's make this a proper album." All the tracks were written and recorded at Hodgson's home studio in London in the summer of 2017. And as quickly as the ideas came to fruition, the album was completed when he "...couldn't write any more and knew that it was finished." It was produced alongside Dave McCracken (Ian Brown, Depeche Mode) whom he met on the Ivor Novello judging panel, highlighting again the serendipitous creation of Tell Your Friends. Hodgson played all the instruments himself, aside from a guitar solo by Kaiser's cohort, Whitey on "Feel Better," violin on "Don't Forget To Go To Sleep" courtesy of Anna C Hodgson, and "My Own American Dream" features The Music's Rob Harvey (keeping it in the Leeds family) on backing vocals.
Adept at his craft, Tell Your Friends marks Hodgson's leap from band member to solo artist, and is a collection of songs that sees him expressing himself in a more personal way than ever before: "The lyrics are very honest, I wanted to express myself on this record, delve a little deeper and draw out some feelings I'd never touched on in songs before...I'd mainly written with someone else's voice in mind, so the lyrics would reﬂect that. I would shy away from writing very personal things, but with this album I thought there's no point doing it unless it's honest." Encompassing his knack for a melody, the album basks in his ability to conjure a great lyric and punchy chorus, be it about love, frustration or fear.