VEEL “FRUSTRATED / MONEYGRUBBER” 7″ (LIMBURG, BELGIUM- Produced and Mixed By Veel
MIT 01995, 1981)
BANDS-WHOSE-NAMES-BEGIN-WITH-THE-LETTER “V” SERIES: PART 3
I have coincidentally been posting records from bands whose names begin with the letter V. And my next few planned postings will be “V bands”. Again, a total coincidence. But thinking about it a little deeper, bands whose names start with V sound real tough and in-your-face: Victims, Vultures, Violators, Vicious Visions (the rare double V!), Vamps, Vopos, Vacants, Valves, and the list goes on and on. I’m sure there is some deeper linguistic explanation other than “that band’s name sounds cool”, though.
Nice colorful rainbow on the labels, eh. The front
of the sleeve, which says “Het klinkt niet alleen
tegenstrijdig…Het is het ook!” translates into
English (according to Google Translator) as
“It not only sounds contradictory… It also is!”.
Here is just the sleeve. And here are the band credits:
Rudy Beyens = Bass
Harold Bochmans = Vocals
Johan Flebus = Guitar (and songwriter)
Theo Flebus = Drums
Ronny Swerts = Drums and Saxophone
Johan Van Den Broek = Trumpet
Here is another cool record from Belgium, home of many cool records and bands in the late 70’s and early 80’s (see The Kids, Hubble Bubble, Raxola et al). Belgium is not that big of a country, but they managed to- per capita- churn out many great records in the KBD years of roughly 1977 to 1982. And let’s not forget the infamous Plastic Bertrand aka Roger Jouret drummed for Hubble Bubble before the whole “Ca Plaine Pour Moi” debacle.
During the vinyl comp boom of the mid-to-late 90’s the best songs from the old scene were documented on four different all-Belgian comps: the first (and best, I think) was the Bloody Belgium LP in 1996, followed by three separate Bloodstains Across Belgium volumes between ’97 and ’99. And let’s not forget that Belgian bands were “re-discovered” and placed onto very early KBD-type comps, starting with The Mad Virgins on 1989’s Killed By Death #4 LP (which I still remember buying new at Pravda Records in Chicago when it came out from their “Import” racks, but that night is another story…)
Special thanks to whoever released the Bloody Belgium comp, because it helped bring the excellent Raxola LP to everyone’s attention and dug rather deep into some very obscure singles. Like Veel- this comp is where I (and I assume many others) first heard their great, bouncy, quirky song “Money Grubber”. It’s melodic, extremely catchy, fast-paced and has some great sing-along, whistle-able “Whoa oh oh oh oh, whoa oh oh oh” parts mixed in as well. As well as some well-placed saxophone (and apparently trumpet?!) playing- I say “well placed” because too many horns in a punk song usually makes me grit my teeth in pain. But not here. And it sounds like the band are playing at that type of energetic pace where they all racing each other to the end, and this is always a good thing for my ears. The guitar strumming is so infectious too, especially at like the 1:23 mark. I think it’s a very orginal, unique-sounding song in general and I struggle to think of other songs on other KBD-ish comps that sound similar to it. Which is a good thing of course.
I bought the Bloody Belgium comp when it came out in 1996 and many spins over the years of “Money Grubber” always made me curious to hear the other side of the Veel single. But no one that I traded music with over all of these years seemed to have it and it’s remained very elusive to me. Until about a week ago! Out of the blue I unexpectedly got an e-mail from the former singer of Veel, Harold Bochmans, who was kind enough to provide me an mp3 of “Frustrated” (and gave me permission to post the Veel single). I have to admit that I felt a little nervous to finally hear “the other side”, as “the other side” of a KBD single can mean pure pain and disappointment sometimes. But not here! I only feel happy, as “Frustrated” is just GREAT. There is a totally different vibe and approach to it compared to the upbeat flipside- “Frustrated” is a rather tense affair, and played much more in-your-face but at a slower pace. The guitar playing is great, as is the drumming and the singing style- just an all-around solid tune. These guys could really play their instruments too. And they totally sound frustrated! So the song name matches their feelings. Now that I’ve heard this song I wonder why it was never comped anywhere. Really a shame that it has remained so obscure and unheard over the years. Hopefully a fair number of people will visit this posting and help end that situation.
Thanks again to former singer Harold for providing these rips and giving the green light to post this record!
COMING SOON! I’ve got some more sidebar items related to Veel and Belgian punk but I don’t want to hold up this posting anymore right now. Stay tuned for more…
Produced and Mixed By Veel