September 18, 2019


BRORLAB is a no wave punk band from Antwerp. They play short songs and short concerts. A short interview.

When did you start BRORLAB?

Sam (vocals): We started making music about a year ago.

How did you got to know each other?

Casper and I knew each other since we were kids and met again while studying film.
Around that time (this was about three years ago) we started going to a lot of garage rock shows in Antwerp, especially those of Hotsjumenas. Raf also played at a lot of their gigs with his (now defunct) band Jagged Frequency, so we saw him play a couple of times.
We started to get to know him better when filming him as part of a Belgian garage rock documentary we made and became friends.

Was there a plan?

We didn’t really plan on starting a band together, it happened spontaneously: we were recording a song for Casper’s band O’Grady at Raf’s studio, where I was doing the vocals. This was my first time “screaming” so we didn’t know beforehand how it would sound. Raf heard it and decided we should try a song he wrote with my vocals. That became the first song of BRORLAB.

Why do you play one minute songs?

There isn’t any big reason for us playing such short songs, we just do it because we think they would quickly become boring when stretched. It also keeps the energy up, and gives me time to breathe.

“That could just be our bad sense of humor”

Why do you play ten minutes concerts?

We think us playing so short is funny, but that could just be our bad sense of humor.

Why do you record with a smartphone?

We use a smartphone as our drum computer for the same reason, but again, it’s highly possible we are the only ones who think it’s funny.

Why the female voice?

We think using female vocals has a different sound, which we like for our songs. I also like doing it a lot because I’m quite calm and quiet in everyday life, it’s really an outlet for me.

Is BRORLAB a performance act or a band?

I can see it as a performance as well because, in a way, I’m playing a character. We also sometimes wear costumes or do silly things on stage, I really like exploring that stuff, but it’s still mainly about the music, that’s why we consider it a band in the first place.

Are you working on a record?

We just finished recording our first EP at Raf’s studio, Tooth Mountain studios. We recorded it on his tape machine. We decided not to use a synth anymore, for the moment, we don’t really need it and it gives me the freedom to move around when we play a concert, but it can always be reintroduced in the future.

Live plans?

We are currently planning our release show, somewhere in the near future.

– Joeri Bruyninckx

BRORLAB live: 25/09 at Les Ateliers Claus, Brussels

Headline photo by Wouter De Sutter

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