Archive for the Belgian Category

The Chrome- The Same Journey 7”

Posted in 1980s, Belgian, post-punk, the chrome on March 30, 2015 by Frankie Teardrop

Hey kids. Still alive and kicking here, and I’ve been gathering up some cool things to share over the next handful of posts. First up is an excellent post-punk 7” from The Chrome, a Belgian band. This is the first of two releases by this four piece outfit, the second being a split 12” with De Hufters. This particular 7” was released in 1982 while the split followed a year later.

After The Chrome split sometime in the mid-80s, it seems that only one member continued on making music (that we know of!). Frank Ermgodts would go on to form The Popgun with Patrick Nicasy. Most notably for SOR readers, Frank would also sing backup vocals on Poésie Noire’s Love Is Colder Than Death LP from 1989.

Otherwise, this particular 7” is more of the same great post-punk sounds we all know and love, with a little stab of new wave sensibilities for good measure. The band reminds me quite a bit of the early Comsat Angels material, if that helps place it on the spectrum a bit. The A-side is a bit darker and edgier, while the flip side has a bit of the ol’ angular jerk to it. Either way, an excellent, if but criminally obscure slice in the post-punk cannon, hope you all enjoy!

The Chrome- The Same Journey 7”
1. The Same Journey
2. Your Eyes

*download it here*

Iconoclass- Tenebrae 7”

Posted in 1980s, 1988, ace buzz, acidity, Belgian, iconoclass, new beat on September 11, 2014 by Frankie Teardrop

Some of you readers may know that I have moonlight as a DJ in NYC for over ten years. During my tenure, I’ve DJed post-punk, shoegaze, coldwave, minimal synth, and everything in between. However, these days I’ve been leaning heavily on the new beat side of things, tapping into the Belgian subculture. For those unfamiliar with the genre (for shame!), new beat is a hyrbid of EBM, acid house and the Chicago/Detroit dance scene, and some of the best tracks walk a fine line between all three. Tempos are slow, lyrics and samples are usually sexually charged, and acid squelches are plentiful. Many of the tracks were written and performed by the same core group of producers, with the singers usually acting as the only variable in the mix (also see Italo).

History lesson aside, many new beat records are affordable, and like any insular dance movement, there was a flood of songs on the market. New beat is one of the more plentiful genres I’ve come across as a collector, so much so that I’m still picking out gems on a regular basis. This particular single is one of the best I’ve come across, and it took a little nudge from Goutroy to check this one out. I was over at his pad one Friday evening, eating dinner and playing old video games, and at some point, he threw on a compilation entitled Best of the Beat– a surprisingly obscure and pricey new beat compilation with no real obvious cuts (101, Tragic Error, The Maxx, etc. are all absent). The whole comp. is solid, though the majority of it was written by a core group of producers- Gery Francois, Tony Baron, Lee Kane, whose projects include Acidity, Lou & the Acid Bananas, and Ace Buzz. As it stands, the trio’s recordings make up over half of the compilation.

Iconoclass is yet another project from these dudes, and quite possibly the best. Released in 1988 and appearing in both 12” and 7” form (both sporting an unassuming cover that looks like Disney meets The Phantom Tolbooth), the original version of “Tenebrae” is one of my favorite new beat tracks that I’ve ever heard; an instant classic combining the traditional new beat techniques with haunting Gregorian chant, a sound that pretty much guarantees true love on my part. It appears here as the B-side, while a remixed (and inferior) version of the track appears on the A-side, likely aiming for the NY hip-hop scene, with some awkward but charming rapping on top of the groove. Your mileage may vary on that version, but the original version is the real deal, and I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do!

Iconoclass- Tenebrae 7”
1. Tenebra (Rap Remix)
2. Tenebra (Original Version)

*download it here*

Coldwave grab bag: Red Rain Coat & Jus Dorange

Posted in 1983, 1987, Belgian, coldwave, jus dorange, post-punk, red rain coat, swiss, switzerland on March 27, 2012 by Frankie Teardrop

I think the internet police have spoken and it’s time to call it a day here at Systems of Romance. I’ve been pretty zen about the whole thing thus far, as it’s been five years and over 500 posts- certainly nothing to balk at. However, I do have a few more posts I’d like to share with you all before wrapping up here. Please pardon the sudden change in file sharing sites. Hopefully these links last long enough for everyone to enjoy them!

Here we have two incredibly rare 7”s for the price of one (hah). Both of these records have been in my wantlist for ages, and it’s taken me some time to track them both down properly. Patience has never been my strongest suit, but it certainly paid off here, as both of these 7”s were worth the thrill of the hunt and have quickly become two of my most cherished records in my entire collection.

Some of you may recall the Jus Dorange a-side from an early VA compilation. Many thanks to Sean McBride, AKA Martial Canterel, for cluing me into that track a few years ago via Youtube, as it’s haunted my dreams ever since. As expected, the flip is just as stellar, sitting nicely alongside Lè Travo, The Names, Aimless Device, & Siglo XX at the top of the Belgian coldwave crop. Two perfectly vicious tracks that demand repeat listening. It’s worthwhile to note that Dries Decocker was also active in The Misz, who released several cassette tapes and have been compiled on the excellent Underground Belgian Wave Vol. 2 compilation on Walhalla Records.

The second single is a more recent, but no less rare obsession. Red Rain Coat were from Switzerland, and while they were more well known for their early 90s foray into more guitar-pop turf, their first 7” is another cold masterpiece of its era. Their story parallels Eskimos & Egypt, whose debut 7”, while having little in common with their other releases, is a bona-fide classic.

Jus Dorange- At Night 7” (1983)
1. At Night
2. Watching

*download it here* (RE-RIPPED 6.5.13)

Red Rain Coat- In Between the Fronts 7” (1987)
1. Small Town
2. Distinguished Ball

*download it here* (RE-RIPPED 6.5.13)

I have at least two more posts in the works, so please do check back over the next week or two for the grand finale!

Lè Travo- Erring and Errant LP

Posted in 1980s, 1985, Belgian, coldwave, darkwave, Lè Travo, post-punk on March 9, 2012 by Frankie Teardrop

Absolutely essential Belgian coldwave from 1985, originally posted by my good friend bx-59cppw and until now, was missing the last track. Thanks to BX for the final piece of the puzzle!

This is the band’s second release, which appeared just one year after an equally excellent split with Fred Angst. Grab that one over at A Viable Commercial. Lè Travo’s tracks on that split were produced by Luc Van Acker of Arbeid Adelt!, Thrill Kill Kult, Revolting Cocks fame.

As for this LP, very little is known, though an insert pegs the band as the brainchild of Patrick Bollen, with two session musicians contributing to three tracks and a female vocalist on backup here and there. Pretty amazing that just one man can create some of the best coldwave of the era. If I had to make a short list of essential records that are in desperate need of a reissue, this would be near the very top (*hint hint*). Don’t miss out!

Lè Travo- Erring and Errant LP
1. Arapaki
2. Something New
3. Hips
4. Guernica
5. Heyday
6. Amarcord
7. E La Nave Va

*download link removed* – reissued on Dark Entries Records!

Wet- That’s The Game (Continental Megamix) 12”

Posted in 1980s, 1983, Belgian, buzz records, new wave, synthpop, wet on April 21, 2011 by Frankie Teardrop

Here’s a killer 12” I picked up in Chicago this past weekend. Shameless synthpop grooves ripe for the dancefloor here- three versions of the same track. The A-side is the club favorite, though those inclined towards instrumental mixes will find two on the flip.

This particular 12” dates back to 1984 (the original version of the track from 1983), and is the first of three from this Belgian duo. Jan Van Den Bergh would achieve success as a major techno/house mixer, as well as the head of the highly influential Buzz label, a mysterious label who released several groundbreaking Detroit techno records in an overseas market.

This particular track should feel right at home for fans of Few Boys, Nightmoves, and any darker tinged italo (Amin-Peck/Fockewolf 190 etc.) Here’s the information:

Wet- That’s The Game (Continental Mega Mix) 12”
1. That’s The Game (Continental Mega Mix)
2. That’s The Game (Instrumental)
3. That’s The Game (Instrumental)

*download it here*

There’s also a 7 minute version of the track kicking around on a 12”, released around the same time. The b-side is the same (though the original 12” lists the second instrumental here as the “Dynamic Mix”), while the a-side appears in its original, non-remixed form. I believe that version has been uploaded here, so check it if you want the complete experience!

Mad Matrix- Men Alone 7”

Posted in 1985, Belgian, disco, italo, italo disco, mad matrix, synthpop on December 13, 2010 by Frankie Teardrop

Here’s a classic disco cut for fans of the genre. Belgian disco with italo leanings, released in 1985. Naturally, several versions of the a-side track exist. The 7” edit is present here, alongside an exclusive b-side not on any of the other singles. For those who can’t get enough of this jam, you can get the 12” extended mix (special club version) by clicking here. Beware the downtuned synth lines! Definitely a killer track in any incarnation.

Mad Matrix- Men Alone 7”
1. Men Alone
2. We Are Mad Matrix

*download it here*

and again, nab the Special Club Version of the track here!

Vibø- One To Many 12”

Posted in 1980s, 1983, Belgian, coldwave, minimal synth, post-punk, Vibø on September 5, 2010 by Frankie Teardrop

Here’s something I’ve seen kicking around a few wantlists, and rightfully so. Killer minimal synth meets dark post-punk guitarwave tracks here from this Belgian band. This is their only release, though I’m sure most have heard of this band via the Tribute to Some Bizarre series. They remind me quite a bit of bands like Siglo XX and the previously uploaded Bildenzone LP.

Not much more to be said about this one, so if anyone else has any information to share, please do! P.S.- the grammatical error in the title seems to be intentional.

Vibø- One To Many 12”
1. Clinical Death
2. The Game
3. Clinical Death (Proloog)
4. Machine
5. World Is Ours
6. Grandma

*download it here*

Bildenzone- Autodafé LP

Posted in 1980s, 1988, Belgian, Bildenzone, coldwave, goth-rock, post-punk on July 26, 2010 by Frankie Teardrop

Taking a drastic turn for the second post today, with a little French post-punk LP from 1988. Expect some dark, thrashy tracks on this LP, mixed with the occasional dance groove for good measure. Lots of doom and gloom and guitar driven greatness to be found, so fans of Ziyo, Siekiera, and the darker side of La Vague Froide (coldwave) should feel right at home with this one.

Otherwise, there’s not a lot of info about this record floating around, as it’s the band’s only LP. If anyone can shed some more light on the band, feel free. With that in mind, have at it!

Bildenzone- Autodafé LP
1. A Pig
2. Livre De Poèsie
3. Île De Pâques
4. Autodafé
5. Rhinocéros
6. Nineties Fright

*download it here*

Cortex- Souvenir/Souvenirs K7

Posted in 1984, alain neffe, Belgian, cortex, experimental, minimal synth, synth on November 9, 2009 by Frankie Teardrop

For my second post of the day, I’ve tracked down a request from a few weeks ago. This particular post contains a rare cassette from Belgian experimental band Cortex, collecting their output from 1975-1982. The cassette was released on two different labels in 1984, and essentially contains electronic experiments with French poetry spoken over top.

Cortex is also one of many projects featuring contributions from experimental mastermind Alain Neffe, also active in Bene Gesserit, Human Flesh, and Pseudo Code. Vocalist Nadine Bal also worked with Neffe in Bene Gesserit, who formed after the Cortex project came to its end.

Without any further ado, the particulars:

Cortex- Souvenir/Souvenirs cassette
1. Cortex E
2. Cortex F
3. Cortex G
4. Cortex H
5. Cortex I
6. Cortex J
7. Cortex K
8. Cortex L
9. Cortex M
10. Cortex N
11. [Unidentified]
12. Cortex O

*download it here*

Though it’s not mentioned on either discogs listing, my particular rip of the cassette features an extra, unnamed track before the final 20+ minute piece. Not sure if it belongs there or not, but I’ve included it for your listening pleasure.

As for the remainder of their discography, Cortex have contributed many more tracks to various compilations over their tenure, most with similar alphabetical titles. Haven’t been able to track ’em down, but I will post them if I ever do!

Jo Lemaire + Flouze- Pigmy World LP

Posted in 1980s, 1981, Belgian, french, new wave, synthpop on April 16, 2009 by Frankie Teardrop

Here’s a fun synthpop/wave record for the excellent weather at work here in the northern hemisphere. The band in question is Jo Lemaire + Flouze, primarily a two piece project formed as an outlet for Belgian singer Jo Lemaire and musician Philippe Depireux, who were married at the time. The band released a handful of records in the late seventies/early eighties, splitting soon after this record, released in 1981. Jo Lemaire divorced Depireux and began a solo career to some fanfare in Europe, recording new wave records sung in both French and English.

It was their final record, 1981’s Pigmy World that set the stage for Lemaire’s solo career, with the strong support of “Je Suis Venue Te Dire Que Je M’en Vais,” a synthpop treatment of a prominent Serge Gainsbourg number. Though it is easily the highlight of the record, the remaining tracks keep the same summery synthpop vibe alive. Without any further ado, here’s the information for Pigmy World.

Jo Lemaire + Flouze- Pigmy World LP
1. Shades Of Night
2. Je Suis Venue Te Dire Que Je Mén Vais
3. Satellites
4. Siamese Sister
5. Chameleon
6. Voices In The Silence
7. Inner Void
8. Escape
9. Outside The Hole
10. Claustrophobia

*download it here*

For a peek at the classic Gainsbourg cover, click below for a “live” performance of the tune: