88-12-18 (De Finkel) S.N.F.U. – The Ewings – Dr Rat – Mental Disturbance

Filed under: Finkel, Jette — Tags: , , , , , , , , — smurfpunx @ 15:27

Since our ‘home’ (Netwerk) was not always available to us (at that time there was ‘book-week’), we sometimes cooperated with other groups of friends who had a space. ‘De Finkel’ was such a place: kind of a darkish, dilapidated youth-centre hidden in a park in a Brussels’ suburb…

At first the plan was that ‘Accüsed’ were gonna be playing too but due to a ‘misunderstanding’, Thomas from We Bite recs booked them elsewhere (a big metal show in Gent – turned out to be a pub of 3 by 20 m, together with ‘Suicidal Tendencies’)… This one was a very successful concert, though smaller (150 attending) but more intimate. Hetty (Konkurrent) came over from A’dam by train. Very good live bands. Friendly people.

I had arranged a show for the ‘Berliners’ in Terneuzen (Nl) the day before and we had met in the summer of ’88 when I toured with ‘Hate Crew’ – they played together in Frankfurt. So I already knew them: Luciana (bassplayer in ‘Dr. Rat’) recognised me immediately. Also ‘Ewings’ guitarist Walt Molt, Bernd (Huber; ‘Dr. Rat guitarist) and the other guys…very decent chaps (‘Ewings’: Ant – bass, Roland ‘Role’ Wagner – vocals).

‘S.N.F.U.’s set was rather short (singer Chi Pig was ill – diarrhea because of Salmonella-infested eggs eaten in England) but very intense. After the show we drove everyone to Aalst where the bands spent the night in ‘our’ pub (Gele Limonade). We had a serious discussion about major labels but also a lot of fun (especially with bass-man Curtis and the roadie)! Playing for ‘S.N.F.U.’ (‘Society’s No Fucking Use’, from Edmonton, Canada) during this 1st European tour were vocalist Kendall ‘Ken’ Chinn a.k.a. ‘Mr. Chi Pig’, the twin-brothers Brent and Marc Belke (both guitar), drummer Ted Simm and bass-player Curtis Creager.


88-12-18 bespreking in Non-Conform #3gig-review (by Simon Guy) in Non-Conform #3

That was our [Ewings] second last gig ever before splitting up. We did our last one the week after. I moved to Hannover and still playing drums in a band called ‘Blank’. Walt & Ant still live in Berlin. Role, our singer, emigrated to the Canary Islands and lives very isolated in some kind of cave (nobody knows for sure). I haven’t seen Luciana & Bernd [Dr. Rat]  since I left Berlin in 1998. The same with Michele, their Italian drummer… Fifi, the singer from ‘Doc Rat’, died in the early ’90s because of his heroine addiction.

Carlo Kallen (‘Ewings’ drummer)

It was amusing to see 4 stalls with T-shirts. […] The ‘Ewings’ were super…

Alain ‘Nabate’ (personal communication ’88)

I remember this show! Great times. Actually the guitar-player from ‘Mental Disturbance’ (Michel Kirby) has some a video from some shows at the Finkel… We were so excited to open for ‘S.N.F.U.!!!

Marc De Backer (‘Mental Disturbance’ bassist)

More great pictures by ‘Kockie’:


in action…

Chi Pig

gig-review in Kwalpol #6:

>>December 18th it was. Whatever. Making up reviews from behind the typewriter is something I wouldn’t advise, but well. ‘Mental Disturbance’ are from Brussels. Under normal circumstances that would say enough; not so here. At times a bit too fast for my liking but they’re OK. ‘Dr Rat’ from Berlin: don’t ask me to whistle any of their tunes. It was Hardcore-With-Exciting-Tempochanges. People who already liked the ‘Ewings’ LP, better go check out this band live in order to get really thrilled. Damn, what an energy, not of this world. The same goes for Mr Chi Pig of ‘S.N.F.U.’, according to connoisseurs one of the most mobile front-men in hardcore-land. I am a connoisseur. So. This was the best concert of 1988 indeed; do note that this is possible in De Finkel. Can you spare a dime?<< [;-) Sorry for non Dutch-speaking people but it’s really hard to capture Bart’s irony and play on words.]


88-09-03 (Netwerk) Ripcord – Lethal Gospel – Political Asylum – Yuppies’Death

I remember this gig very well. That was my first ‘hardcore’ show. I was into German trashmetal at that point! A friend of mine told me that ‘Ripcord’ was ‘the thing’ so I went to check them out. They soundchecked for about 10 minutes and the big drummer looked tired without any ‘power’ (‘Defiance of Power’ ?!?). The bassplayer looked like a drunk crusty (a bit like the bassplayer on the ‘Scum’ album by ‘Napalm Death’). I was wondering how that band was going to kick some ass but as soon as they started, it was a fuckin’ blast! I became a fan instantaneously! There was a huge moshpit and people became crazy as they played ‘Furder’ (2 times, if I remember well). That was my first step in the ‘scene’. 2 years late I joined ‘Hiatus’…


‘All killer, no filler’ here…although 4 bands with different styles and appealing seperate crowds. Most important: all friends of us. ‘Ripcord’ on another short tour I helped out with. Same for ‘Lethal Gospel’ and ‘Political Asylum’. The surprise-act mentioned was ‘Yuppies’ Death’: after ‘Repulsives’ had split up (not long after our 2nd reincarnation as a trio), I started this with ‘Lompie’ (‘No Numbers’) on drums and Hans on bass (his first time in a band – he would later join such bands as ‘Rise Above’, ‘Nations On Fire’, ‘Blindfold’, ‘Liar’). Y.D. played a less punky brand of H.C. with rap-bits and funky parts à la R.H.C.P. We didn’t sound that brilliant then: I had been setting up the stage, moving about with amps and stuff so I was already tired… Still, I think people enjoyed it.

I first got to know P.A. through Mokka’s tape-compilations and soon fell for their melodic HC/punk style. Because of Ramsey’s erudition and love of books (He was the founder of ‘publishing company’ AK Press and now runs PM Press in California.) – amongst other things – we started to correspond and became friends. One summer I spent a sunny holiday of reading (actually slept in a room full of books) and soccer with him in Edinburgh. Anyway, after ‘Ripcord’s full-speed-ahead (which blew us all away…Wow!) accompanied by the slamming and diving of the audience, it wasn’t easy for them to capture people’s attention with their wonderfully tuneful stuff and intelligent words. There was some polite applause at first but enthusiasm grew. They even did a parody on grindcore (of which not everyone got the irony – smile – ergo the jumping and bawling)…

Mokka had set up another tour for ‘Lethal Gospel’ (together with ‘Political Asylum’). This was their 2nd passage in Aalst. This tour was with Keith Chatham of the band ‘Condemned’ on bass. I saw them a few times and everytime ‘Mad Tex’ (Mattx) kept shouting “Hey Duvel!” (referring to the strongest beer in Belgium, that he tasted quite a few times the year before) at everyone. Weird guy!… Their music isn’t really typical super-fast hardcore (they’re more like a garage/blues/punk-band from and supporting the San Francisco underground scene: independent and a-commercial) but lots of people liked them, there was always a great atmosphere at their concerts, with everyone shouting along with ‘Cherokee Nation’ e.g.


‘Political Asylum’ are Scotland’s best band. They always do a song where they turn into their alter-egos (Suicidal Asylum?), put on baseball-caps, roll up their trousers, wear bandanas, etc. Then they do a song that is slow with some fast ‘mosh’ parts. Really funny to watch them making fun of US clones we have in the UK.

Scott; Paisley, Scotland (personal communication ’89)

Mokka was the one that the set up our gigs in Belgium. What a man! We corresponded for many years. We thought Belgium was amazing. The organization, the shows, the hospitality. Lightyears ahead of the UK… I’m not really in contact with any of the old P.A. chaps, though they are still around. Both of the guitarists (Stephen and Stevie) are still making music.

Ramsey Kanaan (‘Political Asylum’)

We went on tour with ‘5Les’ in August 1988 and played with them all over Europe. The band-members at that time were Ramsey Kanaan (vocals and being annoying), Keith Burns (drums), Ewan Hunt (bass-guitar) & me (lead and rythmn guitar). ‘5Les’ had this funny guitar-player called Onno. He was a bit weird. I suppose we all were…  We toured about two months with them, spanning Italy, Switzerland, Holland and Belgium… I liked their cover of ‘Descendants’ song ‘Wendy’. ‘Lethal Gospel’ were touring with Keith from ‘Condemned’ on bass that year. We had played with them in Jette the week before (on a sunny sunday-afternoon, with ‘Negazione’). [see: Concerts * NOT Smurfpunx; there’s a picture in the ‘comments’]

Later I came to the Smurfpunx gigs with ‘Victims Family’ and ‘No Means No’. My former girlfriend and myself drove down from Rotterdam to the gigs and stayed with Mokka, I think.

Steve Dewar (‘Political Asylum’)

I remember being very nervous that day, the place was pretty crowded and I believe this was our [Yuppies’ Death] very first gig (we only did a few) and playing with ‘Ripcord’ was awesome. I was and I’m still a fan of the band. Great times, definitely great times… I’m still doing my thing in ‘Liar’ right now and have played half of the globe with this and former bands…crashing on people’s floors is still a going thing from time to time. :-)

Hans Verbeke

It was great to see you and the rest of the ‘Smurfpunx’ again and a big thank you to everyone who put on the show for us. The rest of the tour was pretty much a success and most of the shows were great. We played with ‘So Much Hate’ 3 times, which was great. Brilliant musicians and very friendly people too.

John Millier (‘Ripcord’) (personal communication ’88)

info-flyer spring ’88

“Drunk crusty”…ha ha, I’ve been called worse (smile). Being in my mid-40s now I’m happy to disclose that I shower at regular intervals and am cognitive of the virtues of personal hygiene. Somehow all of us still find the time and relative enthusiasm to re-enact our protracted youthful shortcomings by playing in various crappy bands as we have ever since the halcyon days of yore.  [Jim explains: ‘Halcyon’ almost almost literally means the “calm before the storm” but can also be used to signify joy, tranquility, etc. ‘Yore’: Obsolete. of old; long ago.]

Jim Whiteley (bass for ‘Ripcord’ in 2nd line-up)

‘Ripcord’ (John-drums, Steve-vocals, Jim-bass, Baz-guitar) photos by Nathalie Guyot (1-2-5), Phil Anthonis (3) & Mike Du Bois (4):

That day I had an excellent time. The atmosphere was very good again, even though things were kind of rough in the ‘pit’ from time to time. I can imagine it’s very annoying having to deal with characters standing on monitors, tripping over cables, etc. I also saw a couple of drunk people laying in the street… The bands were good, I had decent conversations (that’s also important!) and I couldn’t keep from watching the Belgian girls (SMILE). To cut things short: a successful weekend. I was a bit surprised you liked ‘Lethal Gospel’ that much. In my opinion, they don’t have anything to do with HC. They were behaving like machos, had sturdy guitar-solos, making the audience clap their hands, throwing stickers in the crowd, shaking hands, etc. That’s plain rock’n’roll. [Brob: perhaps that’s irony?…] That’s why I though that people wouldn’t like them. Don’t get me wrong: I also enjoyed their concert but that ‘rock attitude’ was nothing for me. But maybe one just has to see through this…

René Harx (personal communication ’88)

I had a great time in Aalst. Everything seemed so well organised and everyone was friendly.  Keep it up – you’re doing a great job.

Digger from Liverpool, driver & T-shirt sales for ‘Ripcord’ (personal communication ’88)

[Brob: Keith from the band ‘Condemned’ played bass on the 2nd ‘Lethal Gospel’ European tour.] I remember meeting a young lady named Rosa Lia and playing and hanging with ‘Political Asylum’, we became good friends with Ramsey the singer. I may have a tape from the show. That was a whirl-wind trip: 7 countries in 21 days, Trondheim down to Torino. [Brob: The 3rd tour we did was even more of a ‘tornado’… – see Brob’s tours] We played Pisa at an outdoor show…

Keith ‘Condemned’ Chatham

Smurfpunx 88-09-03 in Kwalpol 6

gig-review in Kwalpol #6 (Bart Schoofs):

>>‘Ripcord’ was better than I expected (‘Napalm Death’ situations and stuff), particularly in the slower songs. Or was it still early and do I cope better with this kind of music then? Connaisseurs already thought they’d noticed: Brob was sprinting around more nervously than usual. The announced band turned out to be ‘Yuppies’ Death’, his own band. Meanwhile already almost ingloriously perished of weird talk, so I can go and demolish them nicely by now. Keep it up guys! Some bits held quite a lot of promise. A band that that doesn’t have to prove anything is ‘Political Asylum’. Absolute class, and meanwhile on about every compilation-tape in the world. It could have been a beautiful day, if I hadn’t been beaten 9-11, a couple of hours later. I’m talking about table-football here.<< [;-) Sorry for non dutch-speaking people but it’s really hard to capture Bart’s irony and play on words.]

88-09-03 gig-review Genocide #6

gig-review in Genocide #6 (Bert Gysemans):

>>Despite the somewhat unstable sound, ‘Ripcord’ gave us another great performance with again an audience going crazy. They might not have been in the mood themselves – problems with the sound? Being the first band? Or a bit shy? Like the drummer (with who I talked before the gig) who – when I responded to his observation that there were a lot of people by saying that most came for them – who timidly answered “Yeah? For real?”. (Many will remember the gig from last Januray: one of the best of the year.) As I said: they were great and there was a enormous reponse to their brutal, simple and fast HC. ‘Polytical Asylum’ were, no doubt, also great. It is different Music than ‘Ripcord’ e.g.: a lot more quiet and everyone was taking a breath, listening to their varied songs and the messages they sent into the world. As a surprise Brob hit the stage with ‘Yuppies’Death!’. Sadly enough they split up by now and so this was their last gig. It was a very likeable set that they had put together. The response of the crowd was accordingly. We didn’t get to see/hear a lot of ‘Lethal Gospel’ because we had to leave. As far as we could tell, they resembled ‘T.S.O.L.’. In any case, we could face the World again for the time being.<<

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