94-08-19&20&21

94-08-19&20&21 extra94-08-19&20&21 extra back

The first weekend of September 1992 the Vort’n Vis organised what was then called Hardcore ’92. A festival with a mix of punky/crusty bands and straight-egde outfits. The same was intended in September 1993. I wrote about the incident that happened there… Although it was unfortunate, even reprehensible; for myself the motivation to try and bring all sorts of people together stayed. However other people made it so that the 2 ‘factions’ wouldn’t meet so easily anymore. In 1994 an SxE fest (weekend around half of August) and the Leed fest (half of September; the Vort’n Vis’ alternative to the city of Ieper’s mainstream Leet festival) were organised independent from one and other; and caused this ‘split’. One of the protagonists in the aforementioned incident (Hans Verbeke, ‘Blindfold’) obviously was reluctant to see the same thing happening again and set up (with good intentions, I’m sure) a “Positive Festival” – together with his sister Saskia (‘Shortsight’) and Rob Franssen (‘Feeding The Fire’).

This setting would over the years grow into a huge event (not unlike a lot of the commercial summer-festivals) and moved outside of the Vort’n Vis premises. Unfortunately (and that already was from the beginning), it turned out to be a market-place for big/commercial labels and distributions (local and others). I’ve never been able to see what the value of that was and I kept reacting against it. Having SxE and non-SxE friends I also wasn’t keen on the separation.

I wrote about it in a column that appeared in my friend Joeri Hoste’s zine Emotive Impulse (Sep. ’94):

>> We were all very excited about it for months. Myself not in the least; as it came closer it promised to be something wonderful, something that could last a week instead of a weekend. (…) After some shitwork, I wanted to start a bunch of conversations but unfortunately practically all ended up being quite short and superficial (…) consuming seemed like the most important thing again… (…) “I BUY, therfor I am” (actually this goes for the whole capitalist system – ergo: the HCpunk-scene is not so diffrent form the capitalist system nowadays, no?) (…) Another thing: no matter what we all say, there are distinct cliques in our scene. We all pretend they don’t exist but they do… I’m not talking about the obvious devide between SxE and ‘crustpunx’. Also within SxE (as within the crustpunx) there are micro-communities with their own rules, prescriptions, ‘incestuous’ behaviour, etc. How are you ever gonna evolve, learn,… when you never break out these micro-units. You don’t have to know everyone but at least look for different things once and a while; and on the other hand: allow others to get into your group of peers. I try to pick up things from various people, why restrain and stick to one groove? This scene we’re in, this subculture – again – is supposed to offer an alternative to the mainstream, the capitalist/patriarchic system. Let’s all work to create this. Don’t fool yourself and others. (…) <<

The newsletter of March that year started out with announcing a “3-day festival with ‘Scraps’, ‘Blindfold’, ‘Voorhees’, ‘Iconoclast’ and plenty more”. A few months later there was mention of 3 bands on Friday, ‘Blindfold’, ‘Refused’ & 5 or 6 more on Saturday, and ‘Iconoclast’, Scraps’ & ‘Voorhees’ on Sunday. And as you can see on the flyers that were made this expanded/changed gradually.

This is from the newsletter right before the festival:

VV newsletter 94-08 (-)

As far as I can remember this was the actual programme:

19 aug ’94: Spawn (Ger), Congress (Bel), Kosjer D (Bel)

20 aug ’94: Refused (Swe), Abhinanda (Swe), Fabric (UK), Blindfold (Bel), Shortsight (Bel), Acme (Ger), Backdraft (Nl), Nothing Left To Grasp (Ger)

21 aug ’94: Iconoclast (USA), Neckbrace (UK), Feeding The Fire (Nl), Hopeman Path (Bel), Undone (Fra)

Also got on the bill/played: ‘State Of Grace’ (Bel), ‘Vanilla’ (Fra), … But can’t remember which day… Pretty sure ‘Stormwatch’ (Ger) didn’t play.

‘Nations On Fire’ didn’t do a show. Also Steve W. tells me his band ‘Neuthrone’ didn’t play, ‘Scraps’ cancelled and ‘Voorhees’ didn’t show up (read 94-08 [Voorhees])…

Even though this fest attracted a lot of people, it still took place in the pub (and not in the ‘shed’). The distros had a lot of space in the courtyard… So did the people who wanted to ‘socialize’…

94-08-20 VV patio (by Miguel Angel Lorca)L corner: Stéphane Cormary, Ludovic Hache and Agnes (photo by Miguel Angel Lorca); the ‘Abhinanda’ crew on the R

Besides the bands I remember Vique ‘Simba’ Martin was there. So were Nicole ‘Upsi’ Vokrouhlik (from Augsburg) – who was doing a mailorder/label and organised a festival – and her boyfriend Daniel… Volker Pohlschmidt (‘Steadfast’) most likely… Marco Walzel (‘Nothing Left To Grasp’, Speak So That I May See You zine); some of the ‘Doughnuts’ girls signed the guestbook; Albert Cheong from Barcelona (Heartcore zine) took pics… Alan Davis who did Train Of Thought zine (Bristol) was there… Also Nick Royles (Sure Hand recs, How We Rock zine and various bands)… Miguel Angel Lorca from Madrid came over with a friend. My correspondent Amanda Trevens (guitarist of ‘Timmy’ & ‘Huasipungo’) who was helping out Neil Ribonson at Tribal War recs (actually an internship, studying ‘music technology’), and volunteering at ABC No Rio (all in NYC) was in Europe (actually toured with ‘Scraps’) and visited… Some French non-SxE people came over aswell (which was great): Ludovic Hache (Ras l’Bol zine) and Agnes, Karl & Steph (‘6 Feet Over’). And a hell of a lot more… Olivier Lacoste (‘Öpstand’ singer, Bordeaux)?

There were also some people that tried to get to the Vort’n Vis but didn’t make it (unfortunately)… In his zine J’Ai Le Regret A La Joie Mélé #4, Gérome Desmaison (guitarist of ‘Peu-Être’ / ‘Alcatraz’) describes how him and his friend Mickaël ‘Mike’ Ramounet (vocalist in the same bands) took of hitchhiking from Niort/Poitiers (France) to the Vort’n Vis but got stuck (spending the night in gasstation along the highway) before reaching the border, somewhere between Paris and Lille… They returned home but decided to rent a van the next time…

Brob

94-08-xx crowd + Wim Blindfold (by P Federli)audience (Wim ‘Blindfold’ centre); pic by Patrick Federli

I was at every ‘fest’ there in the 90s (I guess up until 2001) and all I can say, is that I always had the best of times. The first couple of times at the V.V. were the best. The yard, the stinky toilets, the little shop at the corner, playing football with the Swedish kids… The list is endless… Best of times and always the highlight of every summer!

Patrick Federli

We ended up at the Vort’n Vis because it was basically the place to be for red edge kids like us! ;-). I went from Marseille to Bordeaux to meet up with my mate Manu who was doing a red edge zine called Wolfpack. We took the train all the way to Ieper, that was a long fuckin’ ride! Ah ah and we sure didn’t regret it.

Frédéric Falzon

 

94-08-21 yard Sherry (Heath)photo courtesy of Heath Crosby (Sherry Beth Sacks in the background)

94-08-19&20&21 Marco WalzelMarco Walzel

see also: 94-08-19&20&21 Hardcore Festival * Italian impressions

additions wellcome!…

Comments
  1. This was my first ‘HC-fest’… It was amazing to see bands like ‘Acme’, ‘Refused’, ‘Abhinanda’, ‘Hopeman Path’, and of course ‘Blindfold’ and ‘Shortsight’, my alltime favorites… Being relative new to the ‘scene’ there were a lot of things going on that were pretty new to me… Never the less, great times!

  2. Raf Gelenne says:

    I am guessing this was my first fest as well. I was into ‘Fabric’, ‘Iconoclast’, ‘Acme’ and the French bands that pulled the right strings those days. Remember meeting the “Simba” girl” there too. We went to London with Aaron [Vyvial] later to see ‘Fabric’ play again and stayed there with her Brighton friend. Good memories.
    I know that a lot of people came for the swedish bands but myself, I was mostly linking up with the British and French. Had a longlasting contact with the drummer of ‘Ivich’ when we started with ‘Churn’. We were all kinda Ebullition minded at that time…
    Wasn’t there a moment that the gate was closed and someone of ‘Hiatus’ got stuck? Didn’t notice the shit until very late. Or was that the year before? People of La Zone [Liège] and later H8000 people were involved… Yep, I was there in ’93 with ‘Doom’.

  3. Miguel Ángel Lorca says:

    I think ‘Acme’ played on saturday and ‘Nations On Fire’ didn’t play at the festival. Good resumé as I remember we had the same impression as yours. The SxE scene seemed getting into a product to be consumed, some people were way too obsessed about their ‘look’.

  4. Jeroen Lauwers says:

    Best year ever! I think everbody knew everybody, no faceless mass.
    ‘Nations On Fire’ definitely didn’t play!

  5. Nathalie D. says:

    I only remember I was sad ‘Voorhees’ didn’t play. I really liked them, had the band’s T-shirt with “Violence the only solution” in big red letters on the back. I had to go and have a talk with my school’s principal because of this. Yes, I must have looked real threatening… ;-)

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