February 26, 2011


Saw this one at a charity shop today and just knew I couldn't miss; handmade black/white cover: check; 1980 vintage: check; reference to legendary punk shop: check. Only point of concern was the back cover mentioned a sax, but at 25 cents this was a risk I could take. And I'm glad I took it; this is a very nice slab of powerpop/punk. Too bad someone cut a piece off of the top, but hey, you can't have it all. And it's nice to be able to put a new record at the front of my A-C records box; grew a little tired of that Action Pact cover.
Just as much fun as finding a record like this is fantasizing how it could have ended up where I found it; the not too exciting town of Heerhugowaard. Maybe this once belonged to a member of local punk band Blitzkrieg?

February 12, 2011


You won't find anything about this band on the 'net; guess that's what you get with an un-Googleable/ unSoulseekable name like If. (I had a similar problem years ago when I was doing a post about the band London. Now Gerogerigegege, Splodgenessabounds or Ziffels, that's more like it!) I guess you can file this under Wormerpunk even though they weren't even Dutch. My band Gepopel once gigged with them + the Sox Pistels (Svatsox doing old punk covers!) around december '84, I vaguely recall they were a three-piece of mixed genders, and each one was from a different country; New Zealand, Switzerland and ?? I guess the Ex/ Villa folks put them up and helped them put out this EP, on which they sound like a slightly folkier version of the Ex, with great vocals (David Thomas meets PiL?) by a certain Flak who I believe was the New Zealand part of the band. The stamp design looks like it's made by Peter Pontiac (I don't think it's in any of his Pontiac Review books), the 33/45 rpm is a nice touch (I wonder if they knew about the Tandstickorshocks EP?), and oh yeah, they also had a song (called Eat Yourself Under The Table or something) on the Emma 2LP comp. That's it. Anyone who knows more: drop in!
P.S.: Jos dropped in to give us the following ifno (thanks, Jos!):
Hey Niels, some more InFo on IF: they were Mark and Dieneke, and they came from New Zealand to live in holland for a while, since Dieneke originally stemmed from Rotterdam. In NZ they used to have a band called Flak. First IF drummer was Rob who used to play in the amazing Dutch group (V/H) De Straks), and when he quit he was replaced by Flavia from Switzerland.
After this 7" they also released a 9-song 12" called Terminal. After that they returned to NZ.
(Actually, both pieces of vinyl are still available through me, if anybody's interested... (> mailorder@theex.nl).

February 06, 2011


I saw fellow vinyl junkies around these parts get paler and shakier as the month of January dragged along, but at last on February 5 Dropstyle opened its doors again... A quick browse throught the punk/wave (I hated it when - around '82? - the moniker "new wave" gave way to "wave"... Makes me think of heavily flanged guitars and Flock of Seagulls hair) bins yielded this nice 80's DIY single.
The Ziffels (named after a pig in the Green Acres TV series!) were from Groningen, a town with a disproportionate amount of great sleeve/poster designers as well as silkscreen printers; anyone who's ever been to the Vera club will know that. In the old Groningen tradition (starting with what I believe was the first Grunn-punk EP, Stad & Plat by Roeg Toeg in 1981) the Ziffels' sleeve is beautifully silkscreened in no less than 4 colours (five if you count the green). The music is pretty slickly-produced REM-type indie rock, which may put some of you readers off but just remember that over here in 1986 sub-sub-sub-sub-sub-Cure "wave" was what 90% of bands were playing so this sounded just great back then. Plus the songwriting is really strong.
Don't know anything about the Ziffels except a few stray mentions I found on the 'net. I saw them on TV back in '87, on the Jonge Helden show that showed lots of cool bands but had the irritating habit of making every band jump around and pull faces. The Ziffels acted relatively cool, although according to some internet source their drummer got an epileptic seizure during filming, which they kept in the video much to his dismay!