Acquaintances from the Vort’n Vis scene (back then living in Lille & Roubaix, north of France, just across the border) – Doriane Billard & Diabolo Caste – did this zine… I only saw this one issue (1990-ish). On the cover it says: “This zine is not a trivial consumption-product but an instrument for reflection.”. The profits were donated to REGAR (a social/humanitarian association). “Y’en a marre” is colloquial for “I’m fed up”.
Nowadays they live in the south: Doriane lives in Bayonne (capital of French Basque Country) where she directs a circus-school (Oreka Zirkoa) and Diabolo is the manager of Veganethik (a “concept-store” with a range of vegan foods plus organic/ecological products, a skateboard corner/skatepark, a bookstore, a comic-strip class, a non-alcoholic organic bar, a tattoo-parlor and piercings, etc.) in Capbreton (south Atlantic coast).
Diabolo became the vocalist of ‘P.R.A.C.H.’, an anarcho-punk band, played guitar in ‘Diatribe’ (anarcho-crust-punk, 1996-98) and was in ‘Rezistenza’ (rock/metal, 2006-07).
Both Doriane & Diabolo were friends with the people in ‘Scraps’. Around that time the Dutriaux brothers had enlisted Tomoy as bassist & Xavier as drummer, and were about to record their LP for Be Yourself recs (Wrapped Up In This Society)… There’s more to read in this interview from their earlier days. They also did a Smurfpunx gig (90-10-06) and an antifascist benefit we co-organised (91-03-03).
Why did we do all this (zines, concerts, etc.)? To create some sort of existence alongside all that commercial stuff! To pass on all sorts of information that couldn’t be found in the sacred press, yes, glitter and company… To have a good time with friends too!!!
I wasn’t that much involved with the zine, I only took care of the drawings. There haven’t been that many issues, I believe. The content was very engaged because our motivation was to pass on antifa, anti-capitalist, anti-sexist ideas…in the DIY scene of the time.
Thionville is where I lived before but I studied Applied Arts in Roubaix where I met the ‘Scraps’. I went back up there to set up a HC/punk band (‘P.R.A.C.H.’ [Pour Révolutionner Alternativement Chaque Humain (To Alternately Revolutionize Every Human)]) and a libertarian and antifa vegan-edge collective. I also replaced ‘Scraps’ guitarist for a tour in France/Spain/Portugal.
START OF THE BAND
The band was formed in ‘83 on the coast in the region of Boulogne-sur-Mer and since 5 years we have had a lot of changes of musicians (too much to mention…) and quite some problems. Currently we are: Xavier on the drums; Tomoy on bass, ‘Gros-Boeuf’ [‘Big Ox’] on guitar and ‘Charogne’ [‘Carcass’] on vocals. ‘Gros-Boeuf’ also throws in some of the Aaarghs.
How many concerts have you done?
We did about a hundred concerts all over Europe (West and East) with bands such as ‘Negazione’ (laughter… seeing what it is now), ‘Cólera’, ‘Chaos UK’, ‘Generic’, ‘E.N.E.’, etc. To be brief: a good bunch of international bands.
You play a lot more abroad than in France! Why is that?
That’s due to the fact that we get a lot more asked there, especially in Nordic countries where hardcore is more popular, people appreciate this kind of music more than in France. A simple example: this summer we did a European tour, we played in Switzerland, Germany, the U.K., Austria, Yugoslavia…but not in France because in France, we’re still a little behind when it comes to hardcore; there’s no permanent structure that can host bands like ‘Scraps’ or other Americans, British,… We often visit concerts in Belgium, or go see American bands that tour in Europe because in France, there’s no possibilities to see them. There’s hardly anyone who organises gigs for hardcore bands, for many reasons. First, in France people are more interested in Parisian bands that are often more approachable than hardcore outfits. And then, there’s also the demand for concerts. On 10, there are often 8 that get canceled at the last moment or aren’t really interresting. Now things are starting to move a bit; a few months ago we played in Lyon, Clermont-Ferrand. It’s starting to change… Let’s say the gigs in Lyon and C-F were concerts organised by political groups, alternative collectives, S.C.A.L.P., autonomous groups… People who do concerts without ads or ‘wild’ gigs, not specifically hardcore things. They ask ‘Scraps’ to play especially because of our committed lyrics and our political approach.
You’ve played in a lot of countries (Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, The Netherlands, etc.) What are the differences in organisation, concert-atmosphere…compared with France?
We have the impression that people who come to concerts abroad or who organise them, take a really more positive approach. When they set up gigs, it’s a way for them to make a difference, invite bands that are truly independent, positive bands that try to create something in stead of always destroying what already exists without offering solutions. The atmosphere at concerts abroad is much better, we really got an impression of solidarity, friendship amongst people. People get together there to meet up, party with mates, exchange contacts, sell records, set up press-tables, do as much as possible! While in France, guys are just out to get drunk and pick fights. Well, I don’t want to generalise but a concrete example: the last time we played in France, in Lyon and Clermont-F.: both times there were problems, fights with intolerant people; as soon as they’re drunk, they start looking for trouble with people who’re there, who did nothing to them and then, obviously, things get out of hand. The difference with countries like Belgium, The Netherlands, etc. is that over there there are also a lot of 77-punks, hardcores, trashers, skaters, cool dudes and hard-rockers (very little). In short: it’s an extremely varied crowd but above all, everyone respects each other and from then on, there are no problems.
What kind of things do you do outside the band?
Well, we try to put our lyrics into practice in our daily lives. That is to say that we’re not just satisfied with denouncing the system (that’s not good, this isn’t right, don’t do that…) but we try to put all this into practice. We do a radio-program called Raw Power on Radio Campus, which is a very interesting radio-station because it’s non-commercial, non-advertising and an association. It exists since 1969 and it is also the first free radio that was created in France. For 20 years, it has kept its character of freedom, pluralism and expression. This is an important part of our work: to show people, not just the new music, the current alternative music of the United States, Japan or other countries but especially the message and ideas of these bands. We also give a lot of info because we’re not DJs who just broadcast music but we try, through our comments, to provoke reactions, to make people think. We give addresses, contacts so that communication can develop. Otherwise, apart from that, we’re part of a movement of individuals called S.C.A.L.P. (Section Carrément Anti Le Pen [Department Firmly Against Le Pen (fascist politician)]). It’s also an important part of our work because S.C.A.L.P. corresponds exactly what we demand, our political opinions, the social analysis of society. S.C.A.L.P. unites the music, alternative rock, politics, partying, the comraderie, and especially an effective and radical action in the streets. ‘Scraps’ are guys who are pretending-to-be-students: ‘Charogne’ has just finished his military-objector service and has resumed his studies, as for ‘Gros-Boeuf’, he works in a factory (he’s the most unlucky one at the beginning of this year…). But anyway, we always organise ourselves to develop activities related to our ideas. This is unfortunately not always obvious…
You have a lot of new songs? The music is really more varied. Can you tell us a little about it?
Initially, when we started, there were no bands that sounded like us in France and that’s how the band actually got off. We said to ourselves: “Well, it’s weird, everyone sounds the same.”. The music was a bit oi, a bit heavy, etc. It made us really pissed because at the time we already liked brutal bands. So, we did things in that style. It’s been almost 6 years that we did very powerful things, and always very simple. In any case, in the beginning our goal was to make so much noise that people would say to themselves: “Hell, what kind of band is this? Where do they come from?”. And on that level, we succeeded. Now, we really elaborate on the songs. We don’t say to ourselves we’re going to make hardcore songs or very noisy songs to follow the trend (because yes there’s some sort of phenomenon, a bit of a fashion that get some bands to play faster and faster – at the expense of the lyrics). There are bands that have absolutely no lyrics, they’re replaced by grunts! We think that is a bit silly because it has always been going together: music and committed lyrics. The purpose of ‘Scraps’ is no longer to play as fast as possible (though we love it because when you play 3 notes and there’s already hell of stagedive and great atmosphere, it’s something you really feel on stage). Having said this, we try to bring something different now, to find new rhythms; and besides we love playing, e.g. breaks, a bit of rap; it’s really to loose our minds and make a bit of fun. We don’t say in advance: “Well, we’ll do more rock songs or more punk.”. We do what we like and what comes out of the rehearsals. When our album comes out, it won’t necessarily be hardcore songs. It will be the songs coming from the rehearsals and that we will have elaborated. If it works out: good, if it doesn’t: too bad. (Ed.: Well, I’m sure it’ll be okay.)
Do you think that in 1992, with the opening of the borders, this can mean an extra for the alternative scene and that it will change something on a the social level?
It’s not in our interest to leave Europe in the hands of politicians because if we leave it up to them, as it is currently represented, it will be a Europe of cops, unemployment, repression. We remain really vigilant regarding all this. Anyway, it’s like with everything. From the moment we let the politicians decide in our place, we know what the result will be! If there’s no movement behind it, if there are no people who move their ass to make sure that the Europe of ‘92 won’t be a Europe of cops and security-forces, then: dream on! It’s obvious that we shouldn’t rely on politicians.
Also, on the level of the alternative scene, we haven’t waited for the opening of borders to show solidarity between us, to exchange contacts, records…and to play abroad. There might be a good side to it: we won’t have to spend more than 2 hours at customs each time… To us, Europe, on the level of exchange, communication and friendship, that has existed for a long time! In the end we don’t give a fuck about Europe… The media talk a lot about it of course, it will be an event but it will be the Europe of arms, police! The Europe as it is conceived, exists and we’ve lived it since the band and the punk-movement exists.
The social and political level of our beloved France?
We’re already fighting against all the crap in France. There is a climate of hate, a climate of intolerance, a climate where people are afraid of who knows what and they’re divided. It’s something that is artificially created by the powers-that-be. It’s much easier for the state to divide people, to create social classes, cultural classes rather than to see people facing the same problems, united to defend their freedom, their rights. At the social level, be it socialist or whatever, the gang of Chirac [Jacques Chirac; prime minister/president]: we don’t see any difference; and anyway, we’re against any form of government. It’s not the socialists who will bring us more freedom, more cultural well-being. It will only be from the moment when people will realize themselves, take things in their own hands and act themselves, that it will change. We don’t wait for our future, our perspectives, for the part of the politicians. Our future will be won in the streets, in the media, by a movement of unity and solidarity.
You have a lot more contact with foreign alternative bands than with French bands. Why?
In France, there’s no solidarity between bands. Everyone does their own thing, their own concerts, have their own way of living without relying on others; according to their region, their city. There’s very little exchange between bands in Paris and bands from the province. It’s also has to do with labels, e.g. Bondage [Bondage recs], Gougnaf [Gougnaf Mouvement] or Jungle Hop [Jungle Hop International]. It’s a real pity that there’s no solidarity-network, except with fanzines: they support the bands. This also exists with other structures but the bands between them, with a few exceptions or those that do cooperate, show no solidarity. Besides, a lot of bands rely on rumors, gossip, it’s really shitty!
Well, it’s not new but we stay quite serene in those matters because when people insult us through fanzines, we won’t amuse ourselves responding to this kind of bullshit. We work with people who are really interesting, in Belgium, Germany, England, the United States,… If French bands want to stay in their shit, well let them there. It’s not up to us to always take the first step. We already suggested bands to tour with us but they refused. We offered them concerts with us: they refused, or we invited them to play in Lille: they refused again! Well, we can’t always take the first steps, especially not to get a refusal each time. And we won’t take the lead for French bands. Now we work with a lot of super-interesting people abroad, we have good contacts, good relations and we work with them; that’s all. Anyway, the French scene will remain poor as long as there’s no contacts, solidarity between bands, as long as people will shoot in their own foot instead of working together and trying to get by; at this moment there’s a standstill. There’s still some progress but that’s at the level of fanzines, a public that has evolved. Too many bands remain selfish in their attitude and behaviour.
You’re all vegetarians, what does that mean to you?
Indeed, we’re all vegetarians and depending on the person of the band, there’s more or less different reasons. Vegetarianism for us is a form of political and economic commitment. We refuse to condone the profit made on the death of millions of animals. Eating meat contributes to the imbalance with the Third World and its exploitation. There are hundreds of thousands of acres of land that are destroyed to become grasslands that will be used to fatten up cattle for McDonald’s and other like-minded companies. This meat doesn’t even stay in the Third World countries but is processed directly into hamburgers.
And then it would be impossible for us to eat R27. R27 is the name given to chickens reared on industrial farms. They’re 4 per cage, they can’t move, they are mutants. They have no wings, no legs. (Ed. To save space probably…) They’re fattened up systematically, they never see the light of day, it’s really despicable! They’re also stuffed with chemicals. It’s not just an economic and political problem but it’s also a health-issue because when you see what they put in the meat, you will prefer not to eat it.
Companies like McDonald’s do not dare to give the exact composition of their hamburgers or other crap. We have friends in the United States who know those things very well and who say that McDonald’s, regarding hygiene and quality of their product, is really despicable.
Besides, we reckon that we can easily feed ourselves without killing animals. Entire civilizations rely on cereals and vegetables. But we are forced to eat meat from childhood on. That makes stock-breeders a lot of profit. And then there’s also some sort of bloody French tradition, which is complete bollocks. (Ed. Fucked up?) We don’t give a shit about eating meat with each meal, that’s completely worthless. Being vegetarian is not a fad, it’s an attitude in life, it’s a personal, political commitment.
Your point of view in relation to jails?
Prison is surely not the solution to the problems of violence and rape when we talk about common law. If one sees prison as political confinement, when we look at what’s happening in the Basque Country, imprisonment becomes a means of repression against people who claim their freedom, their autonomy, their rights. When we are against prisons, it’s because it solves absolutely nothing. It often gives rise to shenanigans, manipulations so that people who interfere with the system find themselves in jail for a good bunch of years that way; they have their hands free for even more depression. Being against prisons is also because of the fact it doesn’t respect human dignity. Prisoners are deprived of their freedom, their dignity and the very fact of existing. In addition, prisoners have to undergo all kinds of humiliations, every day. Prison is a place where ferocious beasts or sheep are formed. We try to do everything to avoid that prisoners are reduced to a piece of crap without a brain. Either you bend, you submit or you become a ferocious beast. There’s no alternative because there’s no “social reintegration”. There’s nothing. Prison is a place where people are put away, and we are against exclusion.
Against vivisection? (stupid question…)
We wrote some lyrics about it: Holocaust Animal (Ed. Really good.) In that, we denounce vivisection because in the first place it’s useless, barbaric and above all, it shows well how humans, certain human beings, are the most dispicable: blood-thirsty, barbarous! Especially since we now know that it’s possible to test pharmaceuticals on cell-cultures that are much closer to humans than animals. There are hundreds of products that are tested as ‘valid’ on animals but have had tragic consequences for human beings, especially pregnant women who later gave birth to disabled children, and so on. When we’re against vivisection, it’s because we respect life as a whole. We can’t be for the rights of mankind and despise the rest of the animal- and plant-life… We’re not just against something but we’re for life in general, so that everyone can live in harmony with their environment, with nature and we don’t see why animals should be subjected to frightful tortures, to stupid and useless experiments, without anesthesia (Ed. And even with.). Most of the time, it’s done to test totally stupid cosmetics, beauty-products. We really don’t see the point of killing millions of animals for that! In England, there’s an animal that dies every 6 seconds.
Hmm…for those who would never have had the opportunity to read an interview with ‘Scraps’… A few words about apartheid. It was the title of our first 7”. Apartheid is the glorification of racial hatred, racial differences, discrimination by colour. It’s one of the most disgusting systems that is legalized. That’s to say, in the lyrics we notify the fact that it’s “well-known that white is superior to black” with all that results from it at the level of conflict, violence and contempt for human rights. Apartheid is the ultimate disgusting system and in addition, the most shamefully legalized hate and racism that exists.
You [David] were conscientious objector, the guitarist ‘Réformé P4’ [refused from the military for “psychological reasons”] (Ed. But not affected!). The other 2 haven’t gotten to military service yet and don’t want to. Can we say that you are totally against the army?
It’s clear that there is no member of ‘Scraps’ who goes to the army since we can’t claim a libertarian, anarchist ideal, ideas committed to the freedoms, and then get a lobotomy in the army, enter the military institution with all that it represents: respect for order, respect for hierarchy, submission, discipline, etc. We’re against the fact that thousands of young 18-year-olds have to get their brains taken away in the army. We have no respect for the military. They’re the ones who are causing the problems in the world: wars, arms-trade, etc. We refuse to enter the mold: work, army, education, etc. (Ed. They are bad citizens.)
Can we hope to see an LP by ‘Scraps’?
Well yes, very soon… We’re working on it. Some time ago we put 2 tracks on a Japanese flexi (Ed.: Released by MCR.), with ‘Don Don’, a hardcore band from Japan. We got 600 copies for sale. (Ed.: If you don’t have it, hurry up to get it, there are very few left.) The rest is distributed in the US. There’s 2 new titles on it: Time ‘s Up & Maquereau Trottoir [pimp]. The sound-quality is very good and the flexi itself aswell. (Ed.: That’s right!) As for the album: we work on it and it’s starting to materialise since we went to see for a studio, we have enough songs (some 20). It’s been two years now since we released anything except for the live-tapes. (Ed.: For real fans!) We’ve had a lot of problems with musicians coming and going, we also had to get concerts… Normally there shoudn’t be any problems now, we should be recording it in May. (Ed.: Great, it will be a nice birthday-present for me.)
Will it be self-produced like the previous two?
Yes…but this time, it will be a little mixed. Our Belgian friend Karl [Be Yourself recs = Carl Levecke & Ghilain Vermeersch] will give us the money to do recordings in a Belgian studio and it will be self-produced and distributed in part by Karl, the rest by us and by small labels. We won’t change our habits. We don’t intend to go through record-stores that will make a profit by selling our records, it’s us who will set the price and choose the places where it’s distributed. [Wrapped Up In This Society was released in 1990]
Is there something that is really important to you?
Yes, the record! (Ed.: Am I stupid?) And also staying true to all that we started, to the people who follow us, always remain sincere towards what we do, always find pleasure in doing what we do, always having a lot of fun meeting interesting people, doing good concerts where there’s a good atmosphere… In fact, what interests us is to continue what we do but not no matter what. We’ve set ourselves a ‘course of action’ from the start and we’re actually evolving towards certain things (especially with regard to alcohol, drugs, etc.). But we absolutely want to continue the job we do and to do it better and better with respect for the audience and the people who support us.
Something to add?
Hmm… Laughter (???)
Congratulations and thank you to the ones who’ll read this interview through to the end and good luck to this new zine.
New address: c.o. Stéphane Ll. – BP 21 – 59007 Lille cedex, France (Planet Earth); indicate SCRAPS on the back.
And in preview: The Anthem Of S.C.A.L.P. ‘Gros-Boeuf’ is the songwriter and (partly) interpreter. There isn’t enough space to write down the whole piece (which is quite long). Here are some excerpts: “We live in France but aren’t proud to be French. This wind of intolerance, we will stop it! If the ‘big one-eyed’ one of France [Jean-Marie Le Pen, president of the fascist party Front National] of France shows up in your neighbourhood, we will all go get him to avenge the oppressed. (…) And from the highest branch; like what happened to Joan Of Arc. Without remorse and without fear, I will light the fire. Join us at S.C.A.L.P.; together we will fight against hatred and violence. Solidarity! (…)”
This is a stencil… Just take this sheet, enlarge or reduce it depending on the size of the stencil you want. Then stick it on a not too thin cardboard (otherwise, it can only be used once). Cut out what is blackened. There you go, it’s up to you to find a slogan in the vein of ‘Destroy fascism’ that fits your ideas (and maybe somewhere to put it…). You have the right to sign ‘S.C.A.L.P.’ (Section Carrément Anti Le Pen). It’s up to you…to spray-paint!!!
This interview is a bit out of date (I don’t even dare to tell you when it was done!). It has been reformulated because there have been changes. […]
Disco- and tape-graphy:
Demo (7 tracks): no longer available
EP Apartheid (6 tracks; self-produced)
EP Aaargh! (6 tracks; self-produced)
2 tracks on the French HC-compilation Rapsodie (Jungle Hop)
2 tracks on the Japanese HC-compilation This Is The Life (MCR)
1 song on the compilation New Wave, 1984 The Third
1 song on the Riot Record compilation (Ger)
live-tape in Bredene [Bel, 88] (30 min.)
live-tape ‘Scraps’ / ‘Cowboy Killers’ in Eernegem [Bel, 89-04-18] (90 min.)
split-EP ‘Scraps’ / ‘Don Don’ on MCR