The Priceduifkes interview

15 10 2008

It’s always hard interviewing your friends. You already know the interesting stuff, and you feel like most questions are stupid. I’ve know the guys in The Priceduifkes for at least 7 years now I think. We grew up together, and along the way they started a great punkband. I’ve interviewed them several times over the years, for various reasons, but this time I tried my best to ask some interesting questions and not to ask them what their name means. Kristof was kind enough to answer these questions for me.

Jow Kristof, I feel weird asking this, but tell me who you are and what you do.

Hi Bert, I’m the guy who sat next to you in high school for about 3 years! I’m into Dungeons and Dragons, Star Wars and a bunch of other stupid things, but I guess the reason of this interview is my 3 chord disaster, The Priceduifkes! I sing and play bass.

The history of The Priceduifkes started almost 5 years ago I think. Could you summarise those 5 years briefly for me?

2003: Me and Mambo decide we want to be in a band and start looking for a drummer and a singer. One hell of a quest. We end up with a flutist who has never seen drums in real life and a singer who never actually sang a word in our band. Some months later we have our first rehearsal. VS has his drums, a friend who’s there by coincidence picks up a mic and we write some tunes. Two rehearsals later we decide to quit.

2004: We get asked for a gig although we never had real songs and don’t even exist anymore. We accept the offer though and get back together. The gig gets cancelled but we keep going. We play our two first gigs and kick our singer.

2005: I take over the vocals and write my first song. Everyone’s getting better too and people are actually siked for our band. We also record our first demo.

2006: Our demo gets released and one song gets played on a national radio station. We go to the UK for 4 days with Sunpower and Shredder.

2007: Our first record comes out on both Skintight Records and Squinty Joe Records from England. We do a second UK tour and play lots of gigs all over bloody Belgium.

2008: Second record, cool gigs, lots of support, happy times!

The Priceduifkes started as a kind of joke between a couple of friends, but after a while things got more and more serious. What was the first moment where you thought ‘this is it, we have to take this band to a higher level’.

I don’t really know exactly when that was, but it is true that we got a bit tired of people not taking us seriously. I doubt that anyone ever thought we’d exist this long in the first place… I guess we wanted to prove that we could do more then just being the funny guys, and that probably was when we started playing out of the 20 mile radius around our towns.

You’re releasing your second album in a few weeks. In what ways has the band grown since your first release, Punkrock Afterparty?

This record is definitely much better than the first one. Not only did we record this one much better, we also spent more time on writing the tunes and perfecting them. I guess it’s just a logical evolution though, I personally listen to a lot more music then I did some years ago and you can probably tell that when you listen to the songs. Also lyric wise I improved a lot, or at least I hope so.

Though everything might sound a bit more polished and not all songs are super fast I still think all of them are totally what the PDS stand for, being fast, melodic, catchy and nihilistic nonsense.

The new album will be called “She Spells Disaster”. What does that title mean to you?

The album is named after the second song on it. It’s basically about meeting girls you’re totally into in the first instance, and regretting it afterwards. I’ve been in quite some shitty relations in the last years and tend to write more and more about shit like that.

Are girls a disaster in your life?

I’m more the disaster in girls’ lives.

Let’s talk about the band some more. The Priceduifkes have always been a band with a reputation, good and bad. What’s the craziest thing you’ve heard about the band, or yourself as a singer?

Apparantly there’s this story going around that I fell asleep on the toilet after a gig and just kept shitting, thus messing up the entire toilet, with shit hanging on the walls and stuff. I don’t know where they got that but I don’t think it’s true actually… About the band, ehm, I know that some people wanted to burn one of our shirts at a gig, to show us how stupid they thought we were. We were like “that shirt cost you €8, you cunt, and we don’t fucking care anyway”. They didn’t do it in the end, too bad…

Our local scene consists out of a lot of oi and streetpunk-bands. Do you think The Priceduifkes fit in with them?

We could perfectly fit in such a scene, if only the people in certain bands had a clue about what a scene, and punkrock in general, is all about. We get along great with most bands we play with in other parts of the country, no matter which style they play, but over here it’s a lot different somehow. Don’t get me wrong, over the years we became real good friends with a lot of local bands too.

It’s no secret that a lot of the ‘punks’ don’t like The Priceduifkes. Why do you think that is?

Last week I was reading some discussion on the internet about bands (I don’t remember what the entire topic was about to be honest), and some guy referred to us, saying he preferred bands like the Priceduifkes, “who take a piss on themselves and other bands”. It actually got me thinking, since I never really thought people looked at us in that way. Perhaps some people feel offended by the things I say at gigs, I don’t know. In fact I think the problem is that I am taking much things too serious in some way. I can’t really stand a lot of people in bands, or at least their mentality and their view on punkrock or hardcore. Mr. Punkrock Elite has spoken, haha.

Does that situation bother you?

I used to bother me a lot in fact, but I got over it. Some time ago we arrived at a punk gig near our town and people were spitting on our van, and sitting on the stage with their backs in our direction when we were playing and stuff like that. I thought it was rather fucking funny than insulting. No, in the last year we didn’t have to deal with shit like that anymore, which is fine by me. They must have found out we don’t give a shit about it and that we’ll keep doing what we do anyway.

Thinking about all of that, what does punk still mean to you?

That’s not an easy question, and I’m not gonna bother you with a full page of my opinion on punk nowadays. Basically it’s just about having fun and only giving a fuck about things you care about. Just being yourself and listening to the Ramones can help too. If you really want to get me going, buy me a beer after the show and talk to me about it!


Do you think you’re still the same kid that got into punk years ago, or has playing in a band taught you more about how the ‘scene’ works?

Well I think I got it kinda right from the start somehow. Of course I grew older and I do think different about a lot of stuff but all in all, I don’t think I was such a cunt when I was 15.

What have you learned since then? More good things or bad things?

I learned that a lot of people in the so called scene are just annoying loudmouths who don’t do shit themselves, and basically that it’s not all as perfect as I imagined it would be. Luckily there are a lot of great people too, that kinda keeps me going myself.

We talk about losing our innocence a lot. Do you think ignorance is bliss in the punkrockscene?

I sure think it is. I had so much fun back in the days when we just got to shows and danced our asses of, without giving a fuck about what the others would say. Somehow that’s not always as self-evident when you’re growing older.

On a more lighter note, The Priceduifkes have always been paving their own way, doing what you want. Is that hard?

On one hand it’s way easier when you can do something that has a large fanbase and stuff from the beginning. When you played hardcore in 2004 you could play shows in Belgium or Holland every week, you know? We play a genre that had died years ago in Belgium, so we got on very different bills. We played with everything from surfbands to beatdownbands and had the luck that a lot of very different people saw us and seemed to like what we were doing. We had some chances and offers from people we’d never expect to get them from, and that’s how more and more people started to get into it. But even at this moment I still think it’s unlikely that a Belgian label will sign us since we’re still doing our own thing, which is totally cool with me.

One thing The Priceduifkes are known for are their crazy shows. For instance the Punkrock Afterparty-party. What’s the craziest show you ever played?

The one you mention, the release show of our previous record, was definitely the craziest one! Sombrero’s, confetti, champagne, wifebeaters and surfboards: aight! Another one that comes to mind was a show in de pintjeswinkel, a very small bar in our drummer’s hometown, this year, with about 15 kids going ape while we just raged through our set without having a decent PA. Anyway, come see it yourself on the 24th of October!

Last one, tell everyone a story about you going on a survival-weekend with school and you and your friends building a raft that was utter crap.

Haha, yeah… In high school we had to go on a survival trip for 3 days and on one of those days we had to build our own raft with inflatable rubber sausages and wooden beams. Apparently 2 of the three sausages were already broken when we got them, so we were forced to use emtpy barrels for it… This seemed a good idea in the beginning, but after we had “sailed” like 20 meters, the whole thing just fell apart. The water was very cold by the way. We had to make it all again and get back in the water. At this time some fat kid from another group had joined us ‘cause he fell of his raft and his friends just left him haha. So we got back in the water, this time with 100 kilos more on it and once again it fell apart almost immediately. So we decided to just go by foot, while two of us stayed in the water with the broken raft, trying to sail on anyway. That was only for 5 minutes ‘cause they almost lost their legs after that. (editors note: because they were stupid enough to try and make it over a 2 foot drop) So we took everything out of the water again, just threw the beams in the woods and the barrels and the remaining sausage in the water (it floats, right, so they would arrive anyway – so we thought). We did the entire 8 kilometres or so by foot, all wet and cold, and believe me, that trip didn’t seem to end. I’m not gonna bother you with all the things we did on our way ‘cause this story is long enough anyway, but the only thing I gotta mention is Mambo (our guitarplayer) constantly nagging how we were gonna die cause there was noone there and we didn’t have anything on us. What a cry-baby actually. Anyways, after that tiring trip we finally arrived at the finish, where all the others had been waiting for us for a long time. As we arrived by foot one of the monitors asked us where our raft was. He got kinda angry and told us we should go back to get it. Can you believe that? We’d lost all of the things we threw in the water already so we just had to go back to get 3 fucking wooden beams… So yeah we did it, while the others did fun things. Oh yeah, I saw a Rottweiler fuck a Labrador! Good times! That’s about it!

——————————————————-

Thanks to The Priceduifkes and Kristof for taking the time to answer these questions. Credit goes out to the people who took the pictures I used in this interview. They are credited to their respective owners.

The Priceduifkes “She Spells Disaster” out October 24th on Skintight Records. The Priceduifkes “Punkrock Afterparty” out now!

The Priceduifkes myspace

Skintight Records myspace

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