87-07-05 (Netwerk) Political Asylum – Spermbirds – Dawn Of Liberty – Indecency

This was a bill with bands that were rather new to me but were going to be quite a big part of my ‘scene’-life and/or influential. It was the first time I witnessed ‘Political Asylum’ live; a band that I got to know through Mokka’s (and Pascal’s) compilation-tapes (called ‘Smurf Punk Tapes’). Very melodic, tuneful stuff; rather unusual in that ‘grind period’. Mokka & vocalist Ramsey were good friends, and I got to know him as a very intelligent person aswell (would later visit him in Edinburgh and help distribute his books/pamphlets). Stephen, Keith & Ewan were nice chaps aswell…

‘Spermbirds’ were rather unknown then. This was their first gig outside Germany and hence in Belgium. I think Werner E. (Hageland) introduced them to us, or was it Moses or Armin? Anyway, they blew us away. A tight outfit (great musicians) playing powerful hardocre-punk; and an intrigueing, funny frontman in the person of Lee (who was an American soldier that stayed in Germany). That day, I remember him citing this little ‘poem’ (when there was a problem with one of the instruments or amps) to divert people’s attention: “Shitfinger, shitfinger … Where did all the toilet-paper go!?”. All these years later the absurdity still makes me smile… Beppo, Markus, Roger & Frank were friendly guys, and we would see more of each other the following years. If I remember correctly, the line-up at that time was Lee Hollis (vocals), Roger Ingenthron (guitar), Frank Rahm (guitar), Markus Weilemann (bass) & Matthias ‘Beppo’ Götte (drums).

Belgian bands were ‘Dawn Of Liberty’ – the band of singer (later music-journalist) Stefan Joosten; more or less ‘Astrant’ (who’d played with us a year earlier) with an extra guitarist – and ‘Indecency’ (who would later turn into ‘5Les’ – different singer): Onno Hesselink (editor of Peace Or Annihilation fanzine, that had interviewed my band ‘Repulsives’ in Jette the year before) and his mates (including drummer Dirk Jans and bassist Filip ‘Boule’ Burgelman’, who also helped out at the ‘Finkel’). [For more info on ‘Indeceny’ have a look at Jungle Of Joy, Antwerp, 12 dec 87 (Instigators) and Boule’s comment there…]


pic from ‘D.O.L.’s 7″ (their performance here is available on tape aswell…)

‘D.O.L.’: ‘Tweeva’ – Danny – Stefan (source ?)

87-07-05 D.O.L.'‘D.O.L.’: ‘Tweeva’ – Danny – Stefan – ‘Fritz’ – Stijn (source ?)

I do remember having the time of my life on the Seeing Red tour with ‘Political Asylum’ in ‘87 – playing Geel, Aalst, Antwerp, Arnhem, rehearsal in Brussels – Duvel beer! We took a lot of photos on that tour in ‘87 but fuck knows where they are now… As far as I can recall the tour was organised by a few folk – We Bite recs in Tübingen did some of it. We did a lot of the dates with Lübeck band ‘Pissed Boys’ [Brob: Hello Mampe!] – they were great guys. We travelled between gigs using cheap inter-rail tickets while they drove with the gear. We used their backline and really appreciated it – then and now! The Lübeck gig itself was recorded and we released as a joint live EP on Fuck Your Brain recs.

After the gig in Aalst we stayed with Guy & Natasja – they had a VW beetle then… On Monday we all went to see ‘Suicidal Tendencies’. [see: Hageland Hardcore concerts Scherpenheuvel] We also stayed at Onno’s one night too.

I left Asylum just after that tour mainly because I wanted to play more music and had just finished university – the others still had 1 or 2 years to go – so I wanted to find a band that was fulltime. Ramsey always claimed I wanted to play slower and they faster. There’s a wee element of truth in there but they hardly broke the Land Speed Record after I left! In October that year I formed a rock band ‘Seeing Red’ [Brob: No not ‘Seein’Red’ from Holland!] (we took the name from the ‘Political Asylum’ European tour poster!). This was a mainstream metal band which had a few breaks, played some major venues and TV shows, released a vinyl single and CD album (CDs had only been around a couple of years at this point). Just as we were about to tour Europe to promote the album unfortunately the singer had a nervous breakdown.

I’ve been playing professionally ever since, mainly in function bands (Oh the shame! LOL). Also had a couple of breaks with original bands – playing in Japan. Now I’m in a ‘Rush’ tribute-band with ex-‘Political Asylum’ drummer Keith Burns – who’s such a talented fucker: he’s playing bass, keys and singing in the tribute-band – he’s our Geddy to my Alex! (

I’m still in touch with Ramsey and support his publishing ventures. Ewan’s a bit more elusive – he’s enjoying family life in Sydney.

A very nice chap from Finland released the early ‘Political Asylum’ demos and Winter EP on CD a few years back: Jallu from the excellent band ‘Phoenix Foundation’ on his Passing Bells label. Boss Tunage Records are distributing it in the UK.

Stephen Brown (1st ‘Political Asylum’ guitarist)

I’m afraid that my involvement in ‘Political Asylum’ was purely as a musician – I was never really involved in ‘the scene’ and had nothing to do with it before or after my time in the band. I was asked to join the band in late ‘85 by original guitarist Steve Brown, whom I had recently met at Edinburgh University. This was a big deal for me as it was my first ‘proper’ band and even though I wasn’t really into the music, I joined for the experience.

I’d never even heard of the ‘anarcho-punk’ scene at the time but found the ideology behind it much more interesting than most of the music! Before joining ‘P.A.’ I could be described as a ‘hippy metalhead’, but having just arrived in Edinburgh from rural Fife, I had lived a pretty sheltered life. ‘Political Asylum’ helped me to considerably broaden my horizons and I will always be very grateful for that opportunity.

I am still very active as a musician. My main instrument is (and always was) bass-guitar, and I sold my drum-kit immediately after leaving ‘P.A.’ in 1989. I am NOT the Keith Burns who played drums for ‘The Proclaimers’! Since ‘P.A.’, the main bands I have been in include ‘Bias Firey’ (, ‘Moving Pictures’ (‘Rush’ tribute-band with Steve Brown –, ‘Zapruder’ (metal, 1995-2000), ‘Nectar3’ (indie, post-punk, 1990-1995).

Regarding Ewan Hunt: he was my best mate from school and we had a little school-band together. He and I moved to Edinburgh together in 1984 to go to uni. I got him into ‘P.A.’ after Norman Thomson left in early ‘86. He’s lived in Australia since the late 1990s.

Keith Burns

The ‘Political Asylum’ lads sunbathing on the roof of Netwerk…



90-03-03 (Netwerk) Hell’s Kitchen – Militant Mothers – Dawn Of Liberty

Filed under: Netwerk, Aalst — Tags: , , , , , — smurfpunx @ 16:51

The ad-flyer reads [No this is not the intro to a Star Trek episode ;-)…]:

“Smurfpunx…carry the internationalist spirit. Thé pre-eminent HC-collective has hosted bands from far beyond our borders since a long time. On March 3rd hardcore-freaks can enjoy themselves in Netwerk, listening to the music of…

‘Hell’s Kitchen’, a band from the San Francisco Bay Area with ex-members of ‘Attitude’, ‘Fang’, ‘Capitol Punishment’ and ‘Verbal Abuse’. Connaisseurs already know what this means: solid HC with thrash-influences, with brutal but ironic lyrics.

We’re also glad to be able to let you hear the best of our Eastern neighbours: ‘Militant Mothers’. After his activities in ‘Morbid Outburst’ and Hackfleisch fanzine, Karl Nagel launches an attack with this new band, where he is surrounded by excellent musicians from Hannover. There first album ‘Acid of Life’ was about the best from Germany in ’89. Musically they refer to ‘Bad Brains’: varied HC with power.

Of course also domestic bands get a chance. With their new guitarist, the Limburgers ‘Dawn Of Liberty’ are rising from their own little swamp, which they’ll prove to you. HC with a pinch of metal.”


All I can recall from that day is that people tried to steal our equipment… I remember being on the first floor of a building, looking down on the street where we parked our van. Someone saw some guys trying to break into it… Everyone started screaming downstairs. The thieves were surprised, got some kicks and then ran away.

The tour was organised by some guy…very unable to organize. We fired him in the middle and did the rest on our own. I don’t know his name anymore.

Karl Nagel (‘Militant Mothers’ vocalist)

L=>R: Mike (drums), Jimi (vox), Chuck (2nd guitar), Troy (bass), Luke (lead guitar)

We lost about 20.000 BeF (€ 500,00) on this one ‘cause there were only 70 people! Luckily we were usually able to maintain a small financial reserve from when there were bigger turn-outs. Unfortunately things wouldn’t last… It kept us from taking more ‘chances’ in other venues and with exciting but lesser known bands (e.g. ‘President Fetch’ from Denmark). Anyway, the bands were excellent that day and those that didn’t show up were proven wrong! ‘Dawn Of Liberty’ existed 3-4 years – very intelligent people, playing HC with metal influences – but split up soon after this (leaving only one, but a very decent, 7” behind. ‘Militant Mothers’ played versatile HC with fast and slower (“more experimental”) parts. I found Karl, the singer (who has my age), to be a very gentle, intelligent and caring person. A pity I couldn’t spend more time talking to him. ‘Hell’s Kitchen’ were a thrash band with powerful music and ironical lyrics.


90-03-03 Pyrobolum #3 reviewgig-review from Pyrobolum #3

I was the singer for ‘Hell’s Kitchen’ during the European tours and on [the album] ‘Fistful of Chicken’. We played a couple of gigs for Smurfpunx [the 2nd: Roxy, Dendermonde, 14 sep 90 (M.D.C. & Spermbirds)]. My memories of the first time is blurred because the bassplayer (Troy, ex-‘Boneless Ones’) opened his wallet and noticed he had forgot to remove 2 hits of acid and in the true spirit of punk-rock we took them a hour before getting on the stage. So mostly Troy and I laughed the lyrics. We had a great time with the Smurfpunx-team after the gig, they took us to a great little pub and introduced us to Duvel and other very strong Belgian beers. I am still great friends with Ludwig, he still helps bands who need shows; my band ‘Strychnine’ has played in Belgium many times thanx to him and Mokka. These were great times and the friendship that we made has lasted, thanx to all the Smurfpunx. The MiMo’s were great too…

Karl fails to mention that he was the guy who saw those assholes trying to steal our gear and yelled “The vans are getting broke into; get them!”. Wé caught and fought ‘em, they were fast but we were faster…

The tour was booked by Tottie [Torsten ‘Toddi’ Mergell], a German dude but he quit half way through; guess he could not take our brand of humour. He told us the only reason he did our tour was for the fame of booking American bands…what a joke. We never let him forget that and made him teach us Traditional German cute songs that he changed the lyrics to make a joke on us but we sang the song with him and it made him so mad when we would sing it on stage and dedicate the song to him. He bailed on us in Italy and left our driver in charge. Ghert was the driver and booked the second tour for us…

Jimi ‘Haze’ Hayes

Loved ‘Dawn Of Liberty’ as far as I remember… ‘Militant Mothers’ were way too experimental for my (perhaps poor) taste, somehow funky and very melodic, not for me, not in a million years. ‘Hell’s Kitchen’ also featuring former members of some legendary Californian bands were OK, not so much musically, but tons of goofy American…uhmm…’comedy’ made it a fun to watch band.

Tom Van Hauwaert

Some pictures of ‘Hell’s Kitchen’ (shot by Ludde):

Jimi entertaining Smurfpunx’ Mokka, Pascal & Ine in Hengelo (Nl)

Jimi Haze (vocals; ex-‘Capitol Punishment’, now ‘Strychnine’ ) @ Netwerk

Mike Branum (drums; ex-‘Capitol Punishment’, ex-‘Fang’, now ‘The Hanson Brothers’) … Troy Takaki (bass; ex-‘Boneless Ones’;  film-editor in Hollywood) … Luke Skeels is the guitarist in the background (ex-‘Boneless Ones’, now ‘Verbal Abuse’)


88-03-13 (Netwerk) Neuroot – [Fear Of God] – Bambix – Dawn Of Liberty – Violent Mosquitos

Filed under: Netwerk, Aalst — Tags: , , , , , , , — smurfpunx @ 07:44

The flyer boldly (but rightly) announces: “H.C. against U.S. imperialism”; this is a translation of the explanation on the back:

“This concert is a benefit for the ‘Stichting Michaël De Witte’ and all profits will go directly to that ‘foundation’.

The foundation was established in remembrance of the young Flemish doctor Michaël De Witte who died in El Salvador February 8th, 1987. It’s first goal is to publish a book about the life of Michaël based on this own writings and testimonials from friends. The second goal of the ‘Stichting’ is the continuation and expansion of Michaël’s life-work, by offering financial and material help to doctors and medical staff who, just as Michaël, want to commit themselves in the Third World, to build a fairer society for the common people.

Michaël graduated as a doctor in 1982. Because he saw that there are more doctors than necessary in Belgium, he decided to move to a country with a desperate shortage of doctors. He chose El Salvador because the population there had entered the resistance against a regime of murders and exploiters. For years the people tried to defend their rights but the landlords, the army and the death-squads reacted with a reign of terror and murdered anyone who dared to raise their voice. Therefore the people were forced to chose for armed resistance, as the only opportunity to end their poverty and exploitation (not unlike the A.N.C. in South-Africa).

In the meantime, the resistance has been able to liberate a quarter of the territory, thanks to the massive support of the poor peasant-population. In these liberated areas, the resistance fully works on the just redistribution of the land and resources. It’s in those areas that Michaël worked as a doctor. He treated the local population for free, set up hospitals, trained doctors and nurses, learned people about better hygiene and a lot more. He also operated wounded resistance-fighters. Because of the continuous danger, it was a hard life but Michaël got a lot of work done, saved dozens of lives. He was very popular with the poor peasant-population.

On February 8th 1987, Michaël was fatally hit by mortar-shelling of the Salvadorian army. The army no longer dares to penetrate in the occupied territories because it’s afraid of the resistance. Therefore it fires from miles away and bombards from the air, thereby hitting civilians as well as the resistance-fighters. The army particularly aims at the hospitals to discourage the population. Michaël became the victim of that.

The only reason because the resistance hasn’t succeeded to expel the powers-that-be yet, is because the U.S. pumps millions of dollars in El Salvador, that they look upon as their backyard. The U.S. makes big money of the people of El Salvador and wants it to stay this way. They also won’t doubt about sending in troops to El Salvador if necessary and then it will probably turn into a new Vietnam. Just as with Vietnam, we have to denounce this kind of U.S. politics and help the people who resist this. Michaël was one of them but many are ready to follow him. And they certainly deserve our support.

By donating 1.000 BeF [€ 25], one can become supporting member of the ‘Stichting Michaël De Witte’. You will be notified about all initiatives of the foundation and get the book about Michaël for free.”

[read also: Michaël De Witte Stichting (info Tilt! #5)]


It’s terrible to have to admit but I don’t have any memories about the benefit-concert for the ‘Michaël De Witte Foundation’ itself. During that era I attended minimum one concert each weekend, sometimes even two to three, and I’m not able to distinguish them all that well (except the really memorable ones).

What I dó indeed remember, is that Smurfpunx were always very open to ‘political’ activities, e.g. also that benefit-gig for the ‘Foundation’. I could certainly appreciate this solidarity!

I can also ad that the ‘Foundation’ is still active. A few years ago, for example, the diaries of Michaël [Brob: Felix’ brother] have been translated to Spanish, because there are also many Salvadorans who wanted to read it. There was an official launch of that book in San Salvador. In 2007 the ‘Foundation’ remembered the 20th anniversary of Michaël’s death with a speakers’ evening in Gent: the place was too small because 300 people showed up. In 2012 the ‘Foundation’ will probably commemorate the 25th anniversary.

People might also know that the F.M.L.N., the resistance-movement that Michaël worked for, finally won the presidential and parliamentary elections in 2009 and is now in power. That probably doesn’t mean El Salvador has become a paradise on earth but there have been a bunch of progressive reforms in favour of the poor. It also means that Michaël’s sacrifice and that of ten-thousands of other Salvadorans wasn’t completely meaningless.

Felix De Witte

‘Neuroot’ had recorded their LP Plead Insanity (out on Hageland recs) a few months before this. After the gig their van appeared broken-down: a defect clutch-cable. Since there were no repairers willing to help, so late at night, Marcel Stol and his buddies  (guitarist Ed, singer Wouter & drummer Ben) couldn’t get back to Arnhem yet and had to stay over in Aalst. Normally Netwerk was closed for everybody; it had been a policy of the people running it, not to let anyone sleep there (because of fire-safety) but this time there was no other solution. Don’t know anymore which of the other Smurfpunx spent the night with them?

Did ‘Fear Of God’ turn up? While setting up the ‘Ripcord’/’Napalm Death’ tour I had gotten in touch with ‘Fear Of God’s guitarist Reto ‘Tschösi’ Kühne & bassist Dave Philips. Erich Keller (who did Megawimp zine & ran the label Off The Disk recs) was the singer of this Swiss grindcore band…


We (‘Fear Of God’) wanted to play this gig badly, being the ‘Neuroot’ fans we were. If I remember correctly, we had arranged everything, including a bus and a driver (none us could drive) but the guy let us down just a day before departure. Too bad – and here’s the apology, 22 years later. :-)

Erich ‘Megawimp’ Keller

I did the babysit for ‘Neuroot’. Maybe there were other Smurfpunx but I don’t remember who. One thing that I fondly recall is Marcel – you had to see him: a tough bloke with a rough voice and covered with tattoos – suddenly waking up growling, with a greasy provincial Holland accent:  “Hé, ferdomme jô… Fandââch is me moekie jâârich!” (“WTF! Today’s my mommy’s birthday!”) :-) L.O.L.

‘Fear of God’ did not turn up. They cancelled the day of the concert, which we found very amateuristic. The band was supposed to come over to Belgium from Switzerland for one gig, which was not realistic at the then ongoing rates; but that they should have known earlier. Why this booking then? In fact, this gig had initially been set up at the initiative of Leen and Natasja. But for one or another reason they could not handle it any more and Mokka, Brob and myself took over (we also made it a benefit for the said Foundation). But some arrangements the initial organizers had made were shoddy at best.

Personally, I liked to support political causes that did something concrete, like this Foundation. [Brob: Indeed! More than music, right!?] The F.M.L.N. elected in power recently… That reminds how much the world has changed! Back then, there was still something as the German Democratic Republic, the U.S.S.R. and Yugoslavia. The Sandinistas were still in power in Nicaragua (well, their leader Daniel Ortega got re-elected as president again in 2006 but is a far cry of what he used to be). Today’s Latin left-wing icon, Hugo Chavèz and his Bolivarian revolution were still far-off and there were no Al-Qaeda and Taliban as the new incarnation of evil yet. Ironically, an icon of the salon-left now sits in the Oval Office.


The band-member with the tattoos remembering his mom’s birthday is Wouter, the singer…

Marcel Stol (bassplayer ‘Neuroot’)

We got a crate of Sloeber [quite strong Belgian beer] that we gladly drunk during that night. And we removed the curtains of the windows ‘cause there were no blankets. Indeed it wasn’t Marcel but Wouter (the singer) ’s mother who had her birthday… Marcel doesn’t have any tattoos nor a deep voice…

Ed van Dalen (guitarist ‘Neuroot’)

All you punx; I’m not dead yet! Here’s some of the few memories I still have. ‘Neuroot’ were good friends off mine. I remember this one clearly ‘cause my best friend was their driver and an old co-squater from Winterswijk & Nijmegen. Edje, the singer, was very upset because everybody was sitting down on the ground and after the first song he was cursing so loud, like “What’s this place, this is like fucking Woodstock!… It worked though…

Victor ‘W.C.F.’

<<Benefit for the ‘Stichting Michaël De Witte’. The Swiss ‘Fear Of God’ was meant to perform but their driver got ill so ‘Violent Mosquitos’ got to play. And they did that hard, fast and with a dash of chaos. The audience reacted rather lame though. A pity. Then came ‘Bambix’ who, just as the ‘V.M.’, are recording a single. 3 girls, nice melodies and good vocals. Nice band. ‘D.O.L.’ sound a lot stronger, with some metal-influences. Great band but it does tend to get a bit humdrum after a while. However, there was some ‘dancing’ going now. ‘Neuroot’ was a surprise to me. The first time I saw them and they go for it. Very heavy music, with the vocals sounding like a thundercloud.>>

‘Thaw’ #3 (’88; Dutch fanzine)

gig-review in Kwalpol #4:

>>What nice initiatives again. A benefit for ‘Michaël De Witte’, a pity he couldn’t experience it himself. For more info: read about it elsewhere in this zine. So that’s why I’m supporting this huh. That’s me, the eternal do-gooder. ‘Fear Of Gods’ didn’t show up (no transport) and were replaced by ‘Napalm Death’, I mean ‘Violent Mosquitos’, a bit better than last time already (Read Kwalpol #3; aaah, those sales-tricks!). And oh well, they had something, occasionally, but I would be lying if I said that the whole thing is not my genre. Lying is very ugly. ‘Violent Mosquitos’ is not my genre. But they mean well and they’re obviously enjoying themselves. And slamming and diving is not necessary per se. You ought to be happy if people actually look at you in stead of punching and crushing each other, oh-what-fun-we-have. Surprise, surprise!! I ate my train-ticket out of joy, which was stupid (it was a return-ticket and I had to get back!), but-euh… I mean ‘Bambix’. How could I have the infinite wickedness of only spending 3 pages on them in Kwalpol #1? I didn’t know that they were doing such genius things. I would’ve called my booklet ‘Bambix’, if I’d had that knowledge… Aaaargghh, what a voice, what tunes! This deserves at least a full album and more; and Ratte is mad. So ‘Dawn Of Liberty’ had the difficult task to exceed this. Although, to me ‘Bambix’ was already the absolute top, before I’d even heard ‘D.O.L.’. Still it occurred to me that ‘D.O.L.’ wasn’t that bad. The amp actually blew a bagpipe-tune. And I’ll keep it to that. I planned to keep my reviews a bit shorter. Saw only a part of ‘Neuroot’, had/wanted to catch my train. ‘Neuroot’. Oh yeah, what a bassist, huh. I didn’t see it all that well without glasses, but I did at least notice fingers flashing back and forth over the strings. Something that used to always give me blisters. Pretending to play does wonders in cases like that. Besides, what a crap review.<< [;-) Sorry for non dutch-speaking people but it’s really hard to capture Bart’s irony and play on words.]


86-12-19 (Netwerk) Ceresit – Repulsives – Dawn Of Liberty – [No Pigs] – [S.C.A.]

Filed under: Netwerk, Aalst — Tags: , , , , , , , , — smurfpunx @ 17:00

Smurfpunx (Aalst 86, Repulsives) 2nd

Smurfpunx (Aalst 86, Repulsives) Duco

As told in Smurfpunx start in Netwerk this was the first Smurfpunx-festival in Netwerk. But it wasn’t the first gig for my ‘Repulsives’ in Aalst because we had already supported ‘Toxic Reasons’ on their tour with ‘K.G.B.’ there a few months before. Yep, our friends in ‘Hate Crew’ and Smurfpunx must’ve been big fans…

I didn’t know ‘Ceresit’ before but we were told they were from Berlin, which was far away and known for its lively scene. The band consisted of Marcel Fery (vocals & guitar), Sven (guitar), Ralf Hermann (drums), Marcus Renner (keyboards) & Daniel (bass). I bought their album Three Gallows from them that day.

‘No Pigs’, according to Duco, didn’t show up – which was a pity cause we played with these Amsterdammers before. Anarcho-punx ‘Dawn Of Liberty’ (formerly ‘Astrant’) were from Limburg (‘far’ east of Belgium), which for us (from the ‘far’ west) was quite a distance away and kind of ‘exotic’ too. It’s where I got to know Stefan Joosten, their singer, who would become a pen-pal and someone to have a decent chat with at gigs… (‘D.O.L.’ played 4 times for Smurfpunx; see e.g. Netwerk, 5 jul 87 (Political Asylum).)


I remember that after ‘Ceresit’ played, the bands, almost the entire Smurfpunx-crew and a bunch of German fans and a big part of the crowd who couldn’t get a train home, stayed at Netwerk to ‘sleep’. I think about 40 people were there. And a dog or 2. And it was very cosy and funny.


I remember this was a very good gig in Aalst. I don’t know why but we played our songs extremely fast that evening. Marcel, the shouter and rhythm-guitarist of ‘Ceresit’ (also ‘manager’) arranged the gig in Aalst. It was during a small tour through Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium. Yes, I also agree it was a very funny night after the gig in Netwerk. It was – especially for me – an unforgettable night because it was the first time I f***ked a girl which I loved very much LOL ;-).

I think, this concert and offcourse the whole 5 or 6 years with the ‘Ceresit’-clan influenced my life and of the others until today. I play drums again in a metal/trash-punk band (‘K.O.C.’), together with Robert (who occasionally played bass for ‘Ceresit’ to help us out). Marcel has a big sound-engineering, mixing and light-techniques company. He mixes a lot of concerts in Berlin: when he start out most of the punk-concerts in Berlin, later also big acts like ‘Metallica’, here in the Waldbühne-Berlin. Sven, the lead-guitarist, played in many punk- and metal-bands after ‘Ceresit’ but he got serious alcohol-problems and is very down today. Marcus, the man of the speacial effects and some synth-sounds, nowadays plays trumpet (!!!) for ‘Blechreiz’, a well known ska-punk band [Brob: These played at the Vort’n Vis in 1992.].

Ralf Herrmann (drummer ‘Ceresit’)

I was very nervous then – our first time on a real punk-festival – but also proud; our whole school knew we had played there…

Stefan Joosten (singer ‘Astrant’/’Dawn Of Liberty’)

‘Astrant’ was just or about to be renamed ‘Dawn Of Liberty’ * Fritz & Stefan (pic contributed by Danny Vandevelde)

Here’s a short communiqué Duco wrote in behalf of the Smurfpunx collective after one of the 1st fests…

>>To everyone who showed up on our 4th Smurfpunx festival (19 dec 86). The programme announced was ‘Ceresit’, ‘No Pigs’, ‘Repulsives’, D.O.L.’. Many among of you found the enterance (200 BeF [€ 5]) very expensive. Maybe it is for some but you should realise that the city of Aalst demands 6.000 BeF [€ 150] city-taxes for organising ‘amusements’, as they call it… And that’s only just one example of financial matters! Then there were also a lot of people who showed up for ‘No Pigs’ and were very enthusiastic to see them play in Belgium again. Unfortunately the band couldn’t make it, what was a disapointment for many, understandably. But what can you do if get a phonecall the night before that the drummer was ill and ‘S.C.A.’ were going to replace them, but they don’t show up either. We gave a part of the money meant for ‘No Pigs’ to ‘Ceresit’ and saved the rest of the profit for a next fest. Apologies to anyone! Next time we will try to, as we did before, offer the best possible bill for as little money as possible.<<


‘Ceresit’ was the very first show that I organised for Smurfpunx. A band from what was then still West-Berlin… Wow, it felt like the end of the world back then! And in fact, it *was* the end of a certain world since West-Berlin was still an enclave in the D.D.R. (the German Democratic Republic) then. Kreuzberg (a part of West-Berlin) was still an epicentre of the European squat-scene. I heard it’s now very vintage chic and yuppie city. O tempora…

That show was also the only one where I met a self-proclaimed Muslim metal-head. His name was Mahmud I think, a Turkish bloke and ‘Venom’ fan who was among ‘Ceresit’s following.

One of the older Netwerk staff, an ageing ex-hippie called Willy, had a crush for ‘Ceresit’s female driver and tried to impress her, drunk as hell as he was, with pidgin German: “OUM-PA-OUM-PA-OUM-PA d-d-dassss ist hier als das Oktoberfest niewoâr my Mädchen!” :-) LOL

The PA bloke who we hired was one of Aalst’s peculiarities as well: Jacques D.W., a perfect double of Urbanus (a Flemish stand-up comedian and also comic-figure) who lived in a chaotic and filthy flat with his P.A. as furniture. We had to get all his stuff ourselves, after we found him at least. But: he was cheap! :-)

The day after their gig Netwerk, ‘Ceresit’ played in Overpelt (Limburg). That gig, which also featured ‘Dawn of Liberty’ and ‘Indirekt’ was organised by Steven ‘Swat’ Schepers [Brob: editor of ‘Zelfkrant’ zine].

There things went wrong: something with insufficient turnout due to which ‘Ceresit’ could not be paid the full agreed amount after which Marcel allegedly threatened Steven to take their tour-bus and ram it into the hall-entrance. :-) LOL

Finally, about these petty complainers that the entrance was too expensive: Pfff…we had several of them and in the end, you know, I could easily grab them by the neck-skin and bash their head against the wall, really. They had *no clue* what amount of free work went into this. Often they were people who had no objections spending several times the entrance-price on pot and booze or on mega-events like ‘Rock Torhout/Werchter’. Later, certain members of local bands even made a sport of getting free gig rides with fake entrance-stamps and beer-tickets. Pathetic.


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