SELF-TITLED debut album appeared of the
end of last year. The music of the
Dusseldorf based trio demanded adjectives
like hard, aggressive, striking
- but did I like it? Well, er... At best
I found it a blueprint for future
developments, a certain stab in some
adventurously raucous direction. At worst
it was a dire bombastic racket.
members' origins stretch from Montreal to
Germany via the Bronx with musical
backgrounds equally diverse.
Guitarist/singer Meikel sprang from punk,
drummer Charly T. Charles (yes!) from HM
while bassist Raoul had indulged in what
the WEA biog elegantly calls the
'sophisticated jazz style'.
At their heart is a desire
to fuse these elements into something
uncharted and unclassifiable. Their lp is
a first step. Their sole British gig was
simply a severe pounding.
Meikel: 'We make a lot of
noise and we want all the people to know
that here is a group Belfegore. We are
not the kind of group who stand around
and wait for people to come. A second
less simple thing is that we want to
communicate with people. There has to be
more than just music, more than just a
group standing on the stage. There has to
be a real communication so that people
get something to know and feel. We
finished part of our musical history with
that first record. We have had quite a
hectic time an now we are taking things
home to think about. Without wanting to
boast,we are going to do some big
The spirited musical
uprisings of the early 80s in Germany
have fizzled out. Rather than a general
flurry of activity, there are a few
groups striding out into often less
esoteric avenues. Belfegore are perhaps
one such group. My genuine German source
tells me they used to be much more
Meikel: 'The results of
our studio experiments are on the lp.
There's a lot of expression, a lot of
feeling, a lot of class there. The album
we like but we're not really satisfied.
Where we are from affects the music very
much but it is not the city we live in or
the cities we play in as much as the
audiences we play for. I think that is
the best influence for your music."
Meikel: 'Music should be
fun. If you make good music, everybody
can relate to it. You don't have to
explain it or be part of a certain trend
or clique. I think the music scene in
England is regressive and conservative
with a lot of frustrated powers. In New
York every little thing that is good is
given a chance to grow and get better.
English groups could be better with more
tolerance and support.'
Their lp drew a lot of
critical acclaim but, impressively, the
group themselves most appreciated one of
the few scathing appraisals.
When they return hopefully
the think will have taken and I
think we'll see a better Belfegore.