Somehow, I ended up going alone. I knew some others who would have liked to go, but they all had something else, cannot remember what. Probably watching the football on TV. Therefore, I cycled the 6 kilometres to Hengevelde to see the new heroes of Dutch rock. I was early, walked around the funfair near the tent where the music would be later that evening. However, as everyone knows, funfairs aren't any good when you're on your own. So I went to the tent, bought a soft drink and stood near the stage, waiting for the action to come.
And when it did come, I was stunned. I liked their albums, but this was so much better. It was one of those nights that you realise that some music gets better when performed live. They played most songs from their recent album 'Younger days', some from their debut mini-album with the same title as the name of the band. Some songs I didn't know, some covers. I wasn't the only one enjoying it, standing front row, literally feeling the noise coming through me. Behind me, masses of others were pogo-ing as if there was no tomorrow. The majority of the crowd stood in the back though, near the bar. The locals were celebrating their annual party, their town organised it, so you went. It didn't matter who played, as long as the supply of beer was sufficient. After the weekend there were 51 weeks until the next local party, you might as well make the most of it.
Not much later the guitar player, Heuff, decided to leave the band. Which was a shame, as that particular night, I found out how great he really was. The solo in my favourite song 'Nowhere to lay my head' was an assault on my ears, but I didn't mind at all. The cover of Lennons 'Give me some truth' was better than the original, something that rarely happens in my opinion. They played a great show, with me on the front row admiring them. As you do when you are still young.
A couple of encores later I left the tent and headed home. On my way home it was quiet. Six kilometres to cycle, there was a clear moon and I didn't use my lights, allowing myself less effort. There was no other traffic, complete silence in the middle of the night. Apart from that beeping noise in my ears. The beep stayed for a day and a half, I never dared telling my parents. But it was worth it. I have seen the Fatal flowers once more, a couple of years later, just before they broke up. They made four albums in total, never got much recognition abroad. Incomprehensible, given the flow of guitar bands that made it a couple of years later. No Seattle for me, give me some more 'Younger days' or 'Johnny D. is back'. Vedder, eat your heart out.