A few months after the tragic events in Paris and heightened security measures, Belgium is once again under security alert level 5, but this time for a good reason: to rise above the frustration caused and to celebrate the local garage-synth-punk music scene in its very own Belgian way. The creative mind behind the concert night is Elzo Durt, artist, DJ and one half of Belgian-French record label Teenage Menopause. He is known for his provocative and humorous visuals featuring Queen Fabiola or Bin Laden and it’s no wonder then that he also didn’t hold back for the poster of this event, which depicts current Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel disguised as a jihadist. We got in touch with the five French and Belgian bands that will be rocking the stage at Magasin 4 on 12 March to hear their point of view on the whole shebang.
Writer Raya Rayax
“We don’t feel like life has particularly changed since the alert, it’s only a figure, and we get used to what is given, right? The decisions made by our governments are poor, and to a certain extent we feel the repercussions from these decisions. But honestly we think that deep down, Brussels and its people don’t give a shit. That is why this event exists, that is why we will have a great time and that is why we will not stop.”
Regal, formed five years ago in Lyon, left France for Brussels a little while ago. They’ve already published three albums and are currently working on their fourth record, mixing styles from dreamy country and pop to garage rock.
Le Prince Harry
“First, it’s a brilliant name for an event. It’s the kind of humor we’re fond of. I like to see this event as an irreverent act of resistance. For me the state-imposed security levels are just another step to instigate fear and establish more control. Under level 4 all cultural events were cancelled, but with this level 5 event we’re taking back the stage!”
Formerly a trio but now a duo, Liège-based Le Prince Harry, formed in 2006, is known for their raw electro synth-punk. They’ve already released four records, with 2012’s “It’s getting worse” being the one you shouldn’t bypass. The two-piece also just published a video to their new track “Chemistry”.
“It’s a provocation with no reason at all. We didn’t want to do it. Our manager forced us, saying ‘if you die on stage you’re going to sell a lot of records’.”
The guys from Mountain Bike started the Brussels-based band back in the summer of 2012, and quickly made a name for themselves with their poppy garage rock. After having played in shows around Belgium, France, and the Netherlands, they’re now working on a mysterious new release that they describe as “a 4 discs strong concept album about the evolution of public transports throughout the years”…
“We’re very glad to play for the first time at Magasin 4 and really like the other programmed bands. The event poster is just totally hilarious; only stupid people will find it offensive. It’s good to laugh a little bit after the lockdown, although living in a ghost town was really inspiring for our music.”
Charnier is a Belgian new-wave trio active since 2013. Their first mini-album, previously published on Wool-E tapes, is now coming out on Weird Son Records as a limited edition vinyl in 300 copies. After the release, Charnier will be packing for a spring tour around Europe.
“We’d like to think that just as our charismatic Prime minister we’ll have the right level for the gig. One of us threw a rock at a bunch of hungry pigeons once, so we’re not afraid.”
You’ll need to decide for yourself if you want to take Keeper Volant seriously or not. What’s for sure: they’ll entertain you with original lyrics heavy with typical Belgian humour and their very particular style, which they describe as “French lover punk”, a surprising mix that is all about girls, cars and football. At the moment they’re looking for a label to release their brand new EP.
Belgique en alerte niveau 5, 12 March, Magasin 4