NM020: pfaff - how to explain de flipstand to a friend

NM020: pfaff – how to explain de flipstand to a friend

format: digital
released: april 21 2006

1.try this at home
2.sink my head
3.i’m in a band
4.no fun being me
5.there are no mountains in the netherlands
7.(just) like your mother
8.you’re on it
9.alright bas
11.me is aw(esome upside down)
12.i’m sorry i really am
13.sleep today
14.no cash for my country
15.new fall in hell
16.cunt hunter


Pfaff is the musical outlet of Bas Jacobs, also one of the driving forces behind That Dam! Magazine and the Wasser Umsonnst evenings at De Nieuwe Anita in Amsterdam. Pfaff’s music is influenced by a passing tram or the noise of the chain on your bike when it gets rusty. And all the music that sounds like music to them. You can label them a garage rockband or call them experimental indie. This album was released on cd by That Dam! and as a digital release on narrominded.

press downloads
hi-res image of cover
press release (english)


november 2006

The flipstand is easy; I always had problems with that midriff spin on the horizontal bar. Doing a headstand I always started to move sideways in a sort of headspin motions, very much like those super cool breakdancers did. Breakdancing was big when I was a kid. So was indie pop and band projects that were no holds barred creative and soaked with an unbelievable sense of humour, from Ween to Doo Rag. Very much like Pfaff (named after the legendary brand of sewing machines?) From “try this at home” to “cunt hunter” this record is stuck full with jokes that range from inside and obscure to straight forward and obscene. Just guess what the title “f.u.” stands for or what the song “there are no mountains in the netherlands” is about. Some of these lyrics could bring him into deep trouble in some areas, for instance people sensitive to sexism and fans of Mark E. Smith.

Musically the tracks follow a basic idea, support the lyrics and usually add another dose of weirdness to the mix. The thing most unbelievable is that all of this comes from one person: Bas Jacobs. Though there is some help of friends, especially of a female singer schooled in the hardcore/punk variety of vocalism. Jacobs is the editor of That Dam! Magazine and concert promoter and obviously the owner of a little homerecording studio or access to a bigger one. Sixteen small songs that range from mere extended two liner jokes to proper ditties in the vein of Ben Folds and the aforementioned Ween, especially early on when all of them were still a little more punk and Butthole Surfers influenced, are compiled on this album. A true flipbook of weirdness, obscenity and strange happenings. The ephemeral and trancelike hommage to Chris Rea named “sleep today” shouldn’t stay unmentioned as should the hommage to The Fall “new fall in hell” and the 4/4-rhythm country-billy of “no cash for my country”. There are little and bigger things that make each track unique and remarkable in one way or another.

Life is strange. If you take walks around town, especially a somewhat bigger town such as Vienna, you can easily see two or three truly weird people within half an hour that are worth a song or carry the spark of a song or two. There is the guy slowly and carefully and painstakingly cleaning the windshield of his car from about one millimetre of snow that has fallen on it. There is the woman buying eight packets of butter in the supermarket and carrying a sack with a dozen more packets, which she assures the cashier comes from another supermarket. There is the supermarket cashier giving her the “who cares”-look. If you walk around the place you live with open eyes sooner or later you will get on some strange ideas, and turning them into song is one of the better ways to cope with them. Who knows what Bas Jacobs would be doing or planning right now, if he didn’t have the release of grabbing his guitar and singing it all off his chest.

Summing up, can anybody writing lines like “You’re a dick and I’m a cunt / we fit together like a rifle and a hunt” really be a bad person? Thought so.

I mentioned a lot of things around the narrowminded weblabel and record label in the review of another release of theirs: Boutros Bubba – “hearing voicst in a beer commercial makes me wanna get drunk” so check this for all the details and info.

vital weekly
september 13 2006
by fdw

I like the Dutch label Narrominded, because they never live up to their name – thank god. They release CDs, vinyl and also MP3s. From the latter section three new releases. Wat de ‘flipstand’ is I don’t know, but Pfaff is a duo of Bas Jacobs and a girl singer, who also published a magazine called That Dam! and organizes musical evenings at De Nieuwe Anita, all in Amsterdam. Pfaff also plays rock music, but hardly mathematical. Lofi garage rock like, with a strong emphasis on lyrics. ‘(Just) Like Your Mother’, ‘Cunt Hunter’ or ‘No Cash For My Country’ are just a few of their titles. They have fifteen songs on offer, which deems a bit much for me. A few of them is alright, fifteen is a crowd.

original article

subjectivisten – caleidoscoop
july 2 2006
by jan willem broek

Pfaff! Meteen maar even met de deur in huis vallen, hoewel dit soort cliché uitdrukkingen niet passen bij Bas Jacobs. Bas Jacobs, voorheen bassist van Seedling, is het ongeremde brein achter de band Pfaff en hij is nog één van de weinige muzikanten die me keer op keer prettig weet te verrassen of zelfs overrompelen. Dat komt door de spontaniteit in zijn muziek, de bevrijdende expressie. Het zit ook boordevol humor – bijvoorbeeld door een verborgen track op vinyl, maar ook qua teksten – of misschien nog meer vol speelplezier, die je bloedserieus moet nemen. Maar ook zijn activiteiten samen met Bas Morsch binnen het label en magazine zonder beperkingen That Dam! mogen er wezen. Pfaff, klap op mijn gezicht.kom terzake! Pfaff heeft als opvolger van het boek en cd Bleek en Berliner Blick (met daarop de bonus cd Chi Fa Da Se, Fa Per Tre) het vierde album How To Explain De Flipstand To A Friend uitgebracht. Naast Bas (zang, gitaar, drums) doet ook ex-Riplets lid Alice Bron (gitaar, keyboard, kazoo, percussie, zang) mee en is Narrominded labelbaas en Living Ornaments-lid Lars Meier tevens van de partij, gewapend met zijn keyboard. Ze maken maar liefst 16 zeer puntige nummers, die samen goed zijn voor 27 minuten muzikale ontlading op hoog niveau. En toch is dat gewoon genoeg, geen gezever om nummers langer dan nodig te rekken. Je punt maken en verder gaan. Je hoort op aanstekelijke wijze het beste van de Pixies, Pavement, Iggy Pop en The Fall langskomen, zij het op een vrije en eigenzinnige manier.

june 26 2006
by jamie hogdson


original article

june 1 2006
by jasper van vugt

Bas Jacobs, de boomlange vogelverschrikker uit Amsterdam, is terug met zijn vierde album en zijn derde line-up. Het lijkt Pfaff meer te gaan om de reis dan om het doel, en dat levert telkens weer verrassende resultaten op. Zo zat het vorige (dubbel-)album Berliner Blick/Che Fa Da Se Fa Per Tre verstopt in een fraaie dichtbundel en speelde de zanger/gitarist met twee drummers samen. Het was een van de beste Nederlandse platen van 2004. De drummers hebben op How To Explain De Flipstand To A Friend plaatsgemaakt voor Alice Bron (ex-Riplets). Veel is daar nog niet van te horen, wel is het leuk om te horen hoe de krijsstem van Jacobs het opneemt tegen die van eeuwig kindmeisje Bron. How To Explain De Flipstand To A Friend is ongepolijst, heftig en ook humoristisch, getuige songtitels als There Are No Mountains In The Netherlands en Cunt Hunter. Dit is garagerock op zijn elementairst: simpel, rauw en behoorlijk opwindend. Niet zo goed als de vorige plaat, wel goed genoeg om je equalizer weer eens flink in het rood te laten slaan en uit te kijken naar zijn volgende zet.

original article

vpro 3voor12
april 6 2006
by thomas van aalten


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