95-04-09 Strain – Mainstrike – Rancor – Congress

Posted: November 23, 2014 in VV 1995
Tags: , , , , , , ,

95-04-09 Strain Remorse 7'' cover‘Strain’ – Remorse 7″

This gig was organised by Hans Verbeke…

‘Strain’ was a band from Vancouver (Canada) that played “metallic mosh-core in the vein of ‘Snapcase’ & ‘Chokehold’, with staccato rhythms”: Eric ‘Flexyourhead’ Thorkelsson (bass; ex ‘Fratricide’; does the Flex Your Head radio-show), Jody Taylor (vocals), Len Greenblat (drums), Greg Dinardo (guitar) and Sean Lande (guitar; seanlande.com). They had put out some 7”s (self-titled on Overkill recs ’94, Cataract & Driven on HeartFirst ’94, Remorse on Pushead’s Bacteria Sour recs ‘95) and later recorded for several more releases on the label ran by Flo(rian) Helmchen (my mate from Berlin, ex ‘Squandered Message’ bassist): HeartFirst recs. The latter was on the road with them and present here. On this tour Gabriel ‘Gabe’ Mantle stood in on drums, and I believe Jennings ‘Jinx’ Stringer stood in on guitar. The band came back on 96-09-22…

‘Mainstrike’, a SxE band from Arnhem/Nijmegen did their first gig at the V.V. that day. They were Jeroen ‘Beertje’ Vrijhoef (guitar; together with Marcel Palijama he also ran the label Coalition recs), Jasper Meijerink (bass; later replaced by Johnny van de Koolwijk), Jonas Moberg (guitar), Roland ‘Big’ ‘Lord Bigma’ Roller (vocals, also guitarist ‘Man Lifting Banner’) and Pepijn Oostenbrink (drums, later also in ‘One Day Closer’). They had a demo out, called Youth Crew ’95. After the summer they did a 7”, Times Still Here, released on Peter Hoeren’s Crucial Response recs. They came back a bunch of times: 95-08, 95-10-20, 97-08 & 99-08…

‘Rancor’, an ‘edge’-metal band from Dutch Limburg were Michel ‘Mike’ Senden (guitar; also ‘Bloodsport’), Fabrice Zander (bass), ‘R2D2’ (drum-computer) and Pascal Crombach (vocals). Later it was intended that Armand ‘Persecution’ would take over the bass so Fabrice could play guitar… They recorded a CD entitled Distinguish, released in ’97 by Lifeforce recs (Leipzig). Mike & Fabrice had the idea to do a label, One Solution recs…

Congress Euridium limited 7'' cover

At the time of this gig ‘Congress’ (who’d played here already a bunch of times, e.g. 93-04-25, 93-05-22, 94-01-08, etc.) consisted of Joost ‘Josh Fury’ Noyelle (guitar), ‘Uniform’ ‘UxJx’ Jan Vandekerckhove (bass), ‘Pitbull’ Pierre Vanrumbeke (vocals), Ilja ‘Chill Jay’ De Ceuleneire (drums). Their additional guitarist Michael ‘Micha Soprano’ Pintelon (also in ‘Deformity’) played here too. GoodLife’s marketing-strategy (“H8000 vegan edge-metal”) was taking form. After the ‘release’ of the Euridium 7” (at first on Warehouse recs – the precursor to GoodLife – GL started officially on Jan 1st ‘96; a limited edition was handed out at their gig in The Pits, 94-12-23) and the band working on the Blackened Persistance (should actually be ‘Persistence’) album, Ed had “things going for him”…

Brob

‘Rancor’ and ‘Congress’ played here too. I wasn’t at the festival [95-08] so the pics are from this gig. ‘Rancor’ played with balaclavas that day. And it was also the first day the ‘Congress’ LP was available. [Brob: Blackened Persistance LP/CD was actually officially released on the “release-show” on Nov. 26th 1995 with ‘Nations Of Fire’ in Izegem.]

Jeffrey Kroesen

‘Rancor’….the band I started with Michel (ex ‘F.T.F.’ & ‘Point Of No Return’ guitarist)! I played and we asked Pascal as vocalist. Michel and I were programming sounds/beats but eventually Michel did it on his own. Even before the 1st show Fabrice got in the picture, in the beginning as second bassist (if it was my call) but the other 2 didn’t like the idea (too heavy?). But Pascal already had it in his head: Fabrice would definitely be in the band; as he had promised him. That became a bit of a problem. I then chose myself, stupidly enough, to leave the band to save everything. Fabrice became bassist and from the first show on they were a trio, without me. Still regret this, because it was also my ‘baby’ and Fabrice turned out a big asshole! I’ll save you the details… So, no, I never was on any stage with ‘Rancor’ (unfortunately). I did help ‘em set up on stage at the V.V. and when they played the Ieper-fest, in the barn at the back [95-08].

The music I’ve been making (solo) since 1995/1997 is not an extension of what ‘Rancor’ did, or what I wanted to do. It’s dark ambient/drones/soundscapes. ‘Monotonos’, check my website: monotonos.org (quiet room, good speakers/headphones recommended!), enjoy.

Roger ‘NBH, Nothing But Human’

So ‘Rancor’ is Roger ‘NBH’s baby? That’s interesting…didn’t know that. He and Michel made this song, which eventually got the name Victim 206, but that was even before ‘Rancor’ became a band. (Name and lyrics of that song are by Henry ‘The Serial Killer’ Körver). Roger never showed up for practice, so I guess it’s safe to say he’s never been a member of the band. He was part of the crew though and he made a very nice layout for our tape and indeed, he helped us in Ieper roady-style. But that’s it. It’s something he seems to regret and now he likes to bitch about it. Talking shit about Fabrice. Get over it and grow up, you’re making a fool of yourself.

‘Rancor’ was an experiment. We know it wasn’t all that great, it was experimental and fun, looking back I can say we where ahead of our time. But it was all over before we could give ourself a chance to grow and make our sound more complete. Still, it was fun playing with all these great bands like ‘Congress’, ‘Integrity’, ‘Mainstrike’, ‘Ringworm’ and many more.

By the way: Armand ‘’Persecution’ never played bass, it was something we talked about, but never happened. One Solution recs was just a name but didn’t exist.

Vort’n vis was a great venue, there was nothing like it. It was the heart of the Straight Edge hardcore scene and it was always great being there!

Pascal Crombach, ‘Rancor’ vocalist

Len Greenblat had some sort of break down; that’s what I heard anyway…

Gabriel ‘Gabe’ Mantle, ‘Strain’ drummer on this tour

I was on that tour in ‘95 (guitar) but I wasn’t on the tour in ‘96. (Four your interest: due to some member-issues, ‘Strain’ was almost not going to do the tour in ‘95 but glad they did. Fun times!!!) Sorry, I don’t remember the club or show exactly, but I do remember Ypres… First time for me in Belgium, first time I had some Belgium fries… Yum. I believe there was an air-balloon festival of some sort at the time? Also remember visiting the war-monuments, but it seems like a long time ago. Just by looking at the show-lists, ‘Strain’ played with ‘Congress’… I remember them being pretty damn heavy, probably heavier than any band we played with on that tour. I believe they were still pretty unknown at the time, I think I may still have a 7”?…

Jennings ‘Jinx’ Stringer, ‘Strain’ stand-in guitarist

I was 19 and it was my first big tour. A lot of it was a blur. I remember the ‘Congress’ guys but my memory is so bad. I actually recall playing that show and something about the stage. I don’t even remember most of the shows whatsoever. It was a 7 week tour with shows almost every night.

Sean Lande, ‘Strain’ guitarist

My memory is fuzzy. I remember a strange stage and lots of windows in the venue. Ed took us for some frites and laughed at us when we were surprised that Belgians put more than ketchup on their fries. We also walked around looking at some war-memorials. As for the show: ‘Congress’ blew me away, they were amazing! Met some very cool people there.

Jody Taylor, ‘Strain’ vocalist

I was indeed on tour with ‘Strain’ and at this gig. I do not have a lot of recollections of it; mainly that I met Ed [GoodLife] and Bruno [Genet]. And that I thought what a bunch of clowns this whole H8000 thing was. I also remember ‘Mainstrike’ taking SxE very seriously with their white hooded sweaters, esp. the singer. The gig was pretty OK but I don’t really have much interesting and positive to write about it.

Flo(rian) Helmchen

I have fine memories about the Vort’n Vis. I came over regularly with Jean-Paul of Value Of Strength zine, long before the ‘Rancor’ period. That were always great weekends that I will never forget. ‘Rancor’ played there twice. This first time was enormously embarrassing because the P.A. wasn’t prepared for a drum-computer. Our 2nd performance [95-08], on a sweaty afternoon, was more succesful.

Pascal Crombach, ‘Rancor’ vocalist

photos courtesy of Jeffrey Kroesen:

95-04-09 Strain (by J Kroesen)‘Strain’

95-04-09 Rancor (by J Kroesen)‘Rancor’

95-04-09 Congress' (by J Kroesen)(in the back: Roger ‘NBH’)

95-04-09 Congress'' (by J Kroesen)(on the right: Joeri Hoste (black tie), Ed GoodLife, Aaron Vyvial, Yannick Daems)

95-04-09 Congress (by J Kroesen) helft van Sektor in de pitcrowd (with some ‘Sektor’ members) during the ‘Congress’ set

excerpts from the V.V. guestbook:

VV 95-04-09 - (book B) MainstrikeVV 95-04-09 - (book B) Mainstrike'

VV 95-04-09 - (book B) DianaDiana B. (‘Mainstrike’ driver): “… I loved it here! The bands were great, the atmosphere good, and it’s always nice to meet up with friends and acquaintances, and meet new people …”

additions wellcome!…

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Comments
  1. Jeroen Lauwers says:

    On that release-show mentioned above Hans [Verbeke] played the bass for ‘Nations On Fire’. I was present but no idea why – I always thought ‘Congress’ were crap and I’d had enough of ‘N.O.F.’ by then…
    Jeroen Lauwers

  2. smurfpunx says:

    ‘Squandered Message’ played twice for our Smurfpunx collective:
    88-04-02 & 88-06-25
    (with photos)

  3. Brob Tilt! says:

    ‘Rancor’s track on the Out Of Our Cages compilation-7″: Victim 206

  4. Joris 'Forkboy' Willekens says:

    my first time at the V.V. Naive at the age of 19. Blown away by ski-masks, atmosphere, ‘Congress’. Can hardly remember anything from ‘Strain’, except that it seemed really geeky and un-hardcore (that’s how a 19 yr old at that time thought about stuff like that) of some friends of a friend to go ask for the drumsticks and set-list. We were there with the most of our friends in ‘Outrage’, friends of them, etc.

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