October 24, 2010

Advertisement for HORIZONS-Distro

This entry is no commercial break - it's history. Here we have the first offical mentioning of "Horizons", which I choose to brandmark everything I do in Hardcore. In 1989, if I remember this right, I didn't even know, there was more to come. But here it is. And what it was for many years is: a Distro.
Later on, the catalogue grew extensively. But it also got shut down - twice. The first time, due to lack of interest. The second time, because it was alot of financial trouble and killed alot of my time. I overdid it, to be quite honest. Very early on, I also did wholesale, first items being INSIGHT, EVEN SCORE and the "Only the Strong"-7" directly from Tony Brummel. Later on, started doing Scorched Records, of Ron Guardipee, with the RESOLUTION 10" and GALLEON'S LAP 12". But it was somehow Old Glory-Records, remember the East Coast-Iconoclast on Ebullition, that broke my neck. Well, I did... Whatever - it did not work out anymore, the distro, the wholesale. 
Back to the ad, the experienced reader might recognize the comical style used here. This drawing is by Bart Griffoen, and can easily be compared to the work he did for the PROFOUND-7" on Crucial Response. This thing here, was handed to me by Peter Hoeren. It was a sketch and Peters' supposed choice for the cover of the CHARLEY'S WAR 7". I might assume, not too many of my readers might remember this: there was some kind of quarrel about the layout of the 7". The infamous David "Speed" Strempel was wearing an AGNOSTIC FRONT-T-Shirt on the photo chosen for this 7". Apparently, Peter did not like that and chose to let this get retouched. Those were the days... Anyway, I asked Bart if he was okay with me using this thing for an ad, and it found it's way into the Step by Step-Fanzine of Sven Gagelmann. If you have not heard of that one, you will be seeing stuff here later on. Through Sven, I got to know not only himself, a strange but great mind and household name in early German-Straight Edge, but also other great guys like Uwe Korsch and Jan-Hendrik Meyer (aka Capt Cosmotic or Bassist for THUMB)... Vow, I am kinda impressed what goes along with one little ad! That's what this is about...

HARD STANCE "horizons"


on i look, for my place to be. 
i search and i run understanding. 
i want this feeling and i have this hope. 
i can't let go i have to go. 


give me some room 



cause' if you don't give me my freedom 

and destroy what i'm made of 
you'll just get what you're asking for!

October 11, 2010

ACME-interview from HeartattaCk Issue 5

The following article gained latest recognition by getting mentioned in VISIONS-magazine 90s-HC-special. Gregor Iwanoff, ACME's drummer and person-in-charge (and drivin force of label Chrome Saint Magnus), said that this  interview has to blamed for the bands success in the US. I don't know exactly if that's true, and even might doubt that, but at least it might have contributed to their legacy.
The interview itself happened in a very "special" mood, let me say there was some weed involved on my part, but I was sober minded when writing down the stuff. All in all, it was a cozy setting in Gregor's parental home, and we shared a friendship bond at that time. So, it all was like very personal, and I think that shines through here. I remember Kent McClard saying, that he thought this interview was a let-down because of that aspect, I guess he expected abit more... Well, read for yourself.
In case you are interested in the rest of the issue, and other issues of HaC, check out http://www.operationphoenixrecords.com/archivespage.html

ACME - Interview, Hac #5

October 6, 2010

MY life on the road w/ ZERO MENTALITY & BORN FROM PAIN

Further info: https://www.facebook.com/zeromentalityrulesok

This next entry spawned a succesful myspace-blog (well, to this day the blog has at least over 8000 views). It was written on October, 7th of 2006 a.D. and is about a tour I did in my merchandising years. Of coure, I was the main-man for ZERO MENTALITY at that time, and later on helping out in the BORN FROM PAIN camp on a couple of occasions, so all is far from being any kind of objective - but it's a dairy anyway.
I still find it entertaining, although I cannot really understand some of it anymore, haha...
Well, so it goes:

"by Sven, the Merch-Man

First and for all, if you came here to expect more in depth about the bands and their shared tour - you might as well go waste your time somewhere else or try to get on a show with 'em. Which does not mean, that there ain't some interesting things amonf the following lines. I bet there are... but for the most part: it's how me, myself and I did it. What the fuck - sounds like the cheesy editorial to a 1990s HC-fanzine...hum, maybe that's why this is it: MY SHIT
Not an official part of the tour, but kinda like a nice warm-up have been the two record-release shows for BORN FROM PAIN awesome record »in love with the end« (the first one I really like that much - to be honest) the two bands shared with HATESPHERE and a couple of other bands. Amazingly enough, we at least shared the venue in the neat city of Tilburg, in the Dutch mountains, with well-known Gothic-Rockers WITHIN TEMPTATION and it did not seem that they drew that much more of an audience than the rough side did. I got to know the unbeatable Herald as my main contender at the selling station. Plus I discovered about the MENTALITYs Summer-Collection of handprinted Ladies-only Shirts. With the course of time, we knew we expected girls all over to be not that skinny - hey, is a 38 already a strong number? Nevertheless, the night turned out very well - for the fun part. Danish dynamite is rocking like hell, and with their help i was able to construct a carnival throwing-game of beer-cans right behind the display-item of »In fear of forever«-vinyl.
The most interesting thing about the whole night is, that I saw the nicest little lady of this tour at least there - black-hair, pony-tail, fishnet-stockings. And "our" Portugese shit-worker Ricardo (or Richie as he like to calls himself on his bands FOR THE GLORY's record) still owes me the contact to her...
Home-turf Bochum also brought the loveable CATARACT to the billing, which I found out have a very nice "colleague" at the selling-station. All in all, the show was a big party, including fights and many people we love and love to hate. Sharing time & space with the CLOBBERIN' TIME also proved that plastic-bottle beer is not thaaat bad either - but somehow that must have been the reason that later on, when the party was going to peak, I h-a-d to leave. Only one day later, I found out that i catched some silly disease that made me stay in bed - and for this time that disease was not called "a girl".
But the most interesting thing about the whole night was, that I stilled managed to recognize the nicest little lady of this tour at least there. But I am afraid she wasn't even attending the show, but the Matrix-Party...>
Some days in between, the tour was heading of to East-Germany and some of Scandinavia - which in the end turned out to be one date in Denmark with 40 people. There was no need to go there for me, especially since this was East-Germany - and well, yes, I saw the almighty RINGWORM one day prior to that. With flying Dutchmen all around, including the beatable Herald of B.F.P.-sales fame.So, i hooked up with the bunch after their days off in my hometown of ruhrpott-crown, Dortmund. We'd pick up some merchandise there and were off to this very old University city of Marburg, right in the middle of nowhere-land Germany. The show turned out to be right in the city-center and be a somehow mixture between a typical student-city show, a hard-rock place spectacle, and a usual HC-show in places were they do not happen to often. All in all, this means some kind of enthusiasm that the "knowing places" lack. Big highlight of the whole show was this 50-year old Biker-Rocker that commented on one of BORN FROM PAINs design »I would buy that shirt, if only these crosses were upside-down«. But with his head flying all over the space later on, he became a big fan of B.F.P. anyway - at least for a one-night stand. As expected, it was also Che, who was the closest of the whole bunch to get to choose from fans to practically do whatever...whatever...WHATEVER.
Picture borrowed from ZERO MENTALITYs Myspace-page,
see upper right of  the picture for actual reference
But the most interesting thing about the whole night was, that I recognize the nicest little lady of this tour at least there. Black hair, pony tail, red jacket - and always crossing Herald's an my place with her blonde girlfriend. Such a shame, she even just wanted to buy »the other stuff«, but at least she smiled when I commented on that with »Baby did a bad bad thing« and took a free ZERO MENTALITY sticker with grace
After a horrible night with fucking Hippies singing Beatles-Medleys to the place next to my window and a PortuGEESE guy moving and shaking every two minutes in bed above me, we managed to leave the place damaged - because of Soccer. A habit which was soon to become a regular spectacular. In a pouring rain we had to find a Titus-Store right in the mediaeval city-center because Fink needed a bag for his couple of bags, and Dominik and Rob tried to get a hold on the new CROWBAR record - which turned otu for dominik to at least be the last DIMMU BORGIR one. That made a good background sound to the Bundesliga radio-transmission on our way down to Weinheim. We got there that early that the Soccer-Ball once again smashed something - I am not quite sure whether this was Dennis or Karl. But for sure, Herald next to me was very sad he did not got to make it downstairs, because people keep pouring in like 2 hours before the show - which was at least »interesting«. Pretty much 1 hour later it was obvious, those kids were dedicated. They bought not only one shirt, or one sticker, but like whole packages of things. So right - I had to open some beers to give this a credit. The show itself turned out to be very very good - i got to catch the half ZERO MENTALITY set and was able to witness one of their most energetic performances with a moving audience all over. One of the sets you keep remembering years later - and what makes hardcore »your hardcore«. But only a couple of minutes later, this was going to be Punk-As-Fuck, because: "There are Nazis outside" right before BORN FROM PAIN were going to start. People were flooding out, and the handful of Right-wing party followers must have been really horrified. 20 minutes later everyone was coming back (hey, I had to watch the sales point! - well, of course I only beat woman by their command, not other people). And BORN FROM PAIN was hitting the stage at least almost intensive as Z.M. before. Later that evening, two official races began: Herald and I had to decide who of us would get more tips by people, and all the unbound guys (well.. yes... I am... yes.. competitive) were to see if there is at least a phone-number or something to get. Sorry Marcel did not make it in time before Dennis and the others called him to quit.
But most interestingly I was not thinking of that the whole night, but with leaving that place I met a cute nice bartender there that was like the nicest little lady of this tour at least. Tattoos, wife-beater and nice smile - she hooked me up with a couple of Beck's beer, so she seems to know what a man really wants, haha. I got her contact just minutes before Marcel was about to make it with his »choice of the night« - and since that involves also and foremost some professional reasons (like in »working on layouts« - leave your dirty minds behind, dumb face, haha) that's even possibly going to be more than a trophy
Spending the night in a croowded place with a very basic breakfast, we had all the time in the world the other day to make it into 1.5 hours to Ludwigsburg. Three hours early, we made it to a McDonalds in the city center and came up with shit about Punk Rob and Porn From Spain, or about the veganism of an Apple-Cake. Things turned out to be not that funny once we got back to the place, since that was up in a parking lot and our vans were too high. with the help of TEAMKILLERs van and the soundmans car, we drove some time to get stuff in. Into a Rock Club, with suspicious bartenders and some smeary promoter that talked alot - as I was told. I had to find a way to get the merch set up in these conditions, because i wanted to set myself apart from Heralds way of just pinning it to the wall. I am not quite sure, but I guess in terms of tips, he did better with that way. but with the other competition going one, i scored ++. That much, he even came up to me, and ask, if he is aloud because »that's yours, right ?«. More on that, later on... The show was a kinda let-down to the day before, because 4 bands on a sunday evening simply were too much. I did not know about OPPOSITION OF ONE, but at least they had their fans going off there - which was not as much true for TEAMKILLER. Surprinsingly enough, for a kinda home-crowd, they dragged out some like 30% of the people and with the exception for Jogges guest vocals weren't able to deliver a real highlight show. Sunday bloody sunday, I always saw home-bands find a tuff turf on that. ZERO MENTALITY rocked theri way to the set with a short disturbance by a real sick guy, literally, which later one became like a shadow over the whole thing. At least when I will be thinking about this show, I will always remember this guy - and his girlfriend. Although I got to know some really nice dude personally, in Orhun, and met some people I already learn to like a lot, like K-Rad and Cornelia. If she weren't the very-well-fitting girlfriend of Dominik, i had to say she was at least the nicest girl in there. There were some pretty ones - but well...
But most interestingly I was encountering a thing that never happened befor in my whole life. And the girl involved could have had the potential to be the nicest little lady of this tour at least (if she just were sane). She was the girlfriend of this sick guy, and he introduced her to me with right on leaving towards the door. She kinda gave me the promising eye right from the start, handed me beers, cigarettes, and very soon her mouth to kiss (i really cannot remember with what »reason« behind that, but hey - i already was on a weak spot) Like 30-45 minutes later into the night I found myself kissing her on a regular basis and than it happend: for the first tine in my life, i turned down an offered blow-job. That would have been right there on the spot, because the place would have also fit her right were we stand and be covered up by the posters I setup in front. I just did that for some aestetic reasons, but now I know, there can be more to that... In the end, I kept telling everybody about my achievement in life, and learned to know, i would have been like number 51 in a row of touring guys...
We got on rolling towards Vienna just in that night, with Dominik starting driving, but only half an hour before Munich he could not help but to fall asleep, so we kinda had to stop-over to let me get driving-sober again, since all the other guys had the tendencies to fall asleep and wake up 8 hours later. I then decided after the horrible Munich traffic-directions to choose a slower but more landscape-orientated way to Austria, so that I would be made to stay awake also. For that I also liked to cross history, and came close to the birthplace of the Pope, and decided to cross the border in Braunau, you know, Adolf Hitler was born there. Even the guy we had to buy the ticket from to get on Austrian motorways kinda seemed to remember this famous townie, but his looks. Dominik took over again, and after some 2nd world villages we found the straight motorway and me found the time to make appointment for my job-application/training-day that was going to get me off this tour in Cologne again. Arriving in Vienna we drove on alot of different roads, but basically never left any, because there is this ring-system to it. We came to that place and just discovered that the Toten Hosen has wasted the »Arena« in two days before - but at least we have the impression to have had shared the same showers. You know, showering is almost as nice as orgasm after those kinda drives, so i guess i kinda skip my sexual part for this show since my favorite girl from Vienna does not live their anyway, haha. Anyway, some more into the day, the hippie-punks there graced the whole thing with some mid-time BÖHSE ONKELZ records and we got some nice food that was part of the well thaught-off contract deal. A cheese plater, sweets and fruits - and hell yeah, some flesh for the boys. the guy in charge of the kitchen theri was rad, he really seemed like not just going tu fulfill wishes - he was running doing so. The evening meal was great also, at least for the Vegetarians, but I heard the Schnitzel was good also. The show itself was kinda lazy again, and some of us would and found the time to rather go to the TOASTERS show in the other venue there. But, Marcel, you really have to know more about professional American friendlieness - AS IF the guys really would have heard about the MENTALITY, haha. Well, Z.M. and B.F.P. cranked out some cool sets with alot of energy, but since the PAIN already has been there and obviously would fit more into the sort of audience, they got a far better response. but at least Hannes was there to keep it going into the Z.M.-pit.
But most interestingly I still saw a girl there that was like the nicest little lady of this tour at least. Black hair, black clothes. Unluckily enough, she was with the most late-1990s East-german vegan-Straight-Edge Mosh-kid I ever saw - and really disliked because of the habitus he just seemed to had. Might be wrong because i have not talked to him, but at least I would have treated this girl different althrough this night
Since the next stop was going to be Bratislava, we really had enough time the next day to get it a lazy going. Marcel and I ended the night before with a man's-night-out in front of a computer, some Jägermeister, Beer and a Joint on his part, so sleep was well although there was like almost everybody of us in one room. The soccer-ball was making it's way again, but i guess this time it was just personal damage caused, although we tried many. Anyway, we left a sunny Vienna, and found the border after some confusions - and pretty soon after that, just crossing the river Donau, we were at the place. Pretty soon later the promoter showed up, and seemed to be a nice guy at first, with just some bad day behind him maybe. Later on I found out, he seems to be on a constant bad mood - which might be understandable once you got stabbed in front of your house by Nazis and are willing to leave town soon. But I really had some problems with his attitudes later on. Not so much that he was kinda 90s Vegan-Edge but that he was that much fun about BORN FROM PAIN that he did not even want to have a free sticker or anything by ZERO MENTALITY. Given a personal taste, I still think it's just nice to at least crank up some smile or the other if not only talking to the bands singer you are obviously a big fan of. I kinda felt like »relieved« when at the end of the night everyone of all bands would like to go to McDonalds to get some warm food before the next horrible drive. That must have been a big mental disaster for this guy - but i guess in the end he is going to improve on that. Well, the show itself he did a decent job with, although the turnout was not that exceptional as he might have expected, but with the helps of some more Austrians (even Hannes solved his passeport disaster) the place was at least filled. And danced to the bands - like crazy. If anybody is refering to »Schweinepogo« for shows that don't fit a tough-guy dancing-code over here, i would wonder what they would have made of this pit. but at least people had fun and bought more stuff than we expected - with Z.M. even being on the girls-thing side. Into the PAIN set there was some fight going of, with a guy who is kinda a legend to the scene there, but that did not kept him from (almost - i am not quite sure) hitting the black girl from the night before - with her stupid BF just witnessing. But with people in our bands going off on him - and the show guys really talking amazingly quick care of him. never seen a drunk skinhead thrwon to the floor as quick as these. r.e.s.p.e.c.t.
But most interestingly I saw a girl there that was like the nicest little lady of this tour at least. Long brown hair, black clothes and interested in ZERO MENTALITY-zippers. Like all the other people there she was very picky about how the stuff fits and what might happen after washing it. Funny enough, she was not that picky about her boyfriend - he did not fit as well as Z.M.-related stuff might have
On comes a night with alot of driving included - straight to Cologne. And we almost made it without any longer stop-overs, just some short breaks, especially for Marcel who took over in the morning after Fink and I had our share. We finally got to Cologne like 4 hours in advance and who ever tried to find a parking-slot in that town's city center might now what horror this might be. We were lucky because after some confusion about what to do and were to go, we managed to park right in front of the club - with the ticket-machine damaged. We split there and everybody was going to do his own business there. I had to buy a hat, because my hair was not longer greasy because I wanted it - but because it could not do any better. After that I did some shaving and washing at the Train Station - finding myself watching in a mirror of a street-hooker boy. Almost - not as bad, but i kinda had a good laugh about it for myself. Got to the Cathedral after that to get some soul-food, and decided to go to a neat coffee-place were cool and knowing and strong-minded people could be met. That's why Dominik and Rob already sat there, I guess. Some more fooling around in Stores, we invaded the place and everything turned out to be very Cologne abvout the whole show - i figured. And well, emo-pussie time, I kinda was in a sad mood because of leaving this bunch of great people. I guess once again, the two bands cranked out a really good set and people enjoyed them. Sales were decent, and Herald got better tips. But i totally won the other game. I decided to stay in Cologne. I had no strong will to not to do so...haha... And since then I can extend my »I remind people of ... «-list (after Mike Patton, a young and shaved Robert DeNiro, a random turkish gay guy, ...) with new entry: Sean Penn. I can live with that...
But I can't live without this whole experience - and who ever has gonna have the chance, meet any of those people in these bands (okay,.some are hard to stand on their own, haha) and you gonna just enjoy life to the fullest!"

October 5, 2010

LEBENSREFORM - Self Edge (HEAD FIRST-cover)

The first one is a pretty obvious choice, and does break the "rules" i have stated in the initial posting.
This song was recorded at the infamous Kuschelrock-studios in 1997 with Dirk Kusche, and features the lineup of me, Christian Wruck, Dennis Becker and Mark Wehrmann.
It was supposed to be on a compilation that Thomas Tröger (of LOXIRAN/CHISPA) was going to put out - god knows what happened to that. As you can see, it's not only the music that got reinterpreteted here, but also did I not spent much time in a layout.

LEBENSREFORM - Self Edge (by HEAD FIRST)

October 4, 2010

what's it all about...

this is gonna be a summary of alot of things i have published in the HC-community, be it old fanzine articles, blogs from different social communities, etc. pp.
it's not going to be a mp3-download site, and it's not going to be a documentation of a recent scene - although both might happen once in awhile.
to be honest: i don't care if you gonna like it, because most of it already found its kind of success. if you happen to do so anyway - feel free to let me know and show your support.
one more thing? i am afraid it will be a bilingual mixture, because there is a vast majority of fanzine-stuff from the ZAP-era that i might not wanna translate (although once again: that might happen)...
so, now, let's go (sometime soon)!
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