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Four Factor: Bipolar Rock Battles

2008-02-13 10:28

The four factors they are measured against are:

“Swanesang” – Being popular doesn’t mean you have talent. Wie vat die beker, when it comes to ability and skill? (10)

"Ek Skyn(Heilig)" – To be a rock god you need to be good at creating hype and playing the PR game. (10)

“Brand Suid-Afrika” – Van Coke Kartel is sticking with Afrikaans, aKING sings in English. Who will win die taal wors? (10)

“Vernietig Jouself” – Hardcore rock mafia vs. skinny-jeans-wearing wannabes. Who’s staying true to rock ‘n roll’s Holy Grail of self-destruction? (10) The competitors are…

- Laudo Liebenberg (vocals/guitar), Hunter Kennedy (guitar/ back-up vocals), Hennie van Halen (bass guitar) and Jaco ‘Snake’ Venter (drums).
Read the CD review: Dutch Courage
Watch the music video: The Dance

“Swanesang” - Talent is aKING’s biggest strength. Music is what they do. Many of Fokof’s alienated rock anthems originated in poetic lyricist Hunter’s head. Laudo is not only stronger than Van Coke on vocals but also co-wrote most of the songs on their debut CD, Dutch Courage. – 10/10

"Ek Skyn(Heilig)" - aKING is a band not a brand. It’s about the music not the image. They’ve done well to blip on the SA rock radar before their album, Dutch Courage hit the shelves. But they’ve got nothing on PR monsters Van Coke Kartel with their branded VCK matchboxes, T-shirts and colour coded on stage outfits. – 8/10

“Brand Suid-Afrika” - They are Afrikaans mother tongue speakers but have given up die taal to sing in Engels and broaden their ‘international’ appeal. Veraaiers of vooruitgang? Let’s face it; Fokof became a cult precisely because they did their thing in Afrikaans. – 7/10

“Vernietig Jouself” -. aKING does not sell vulgarity, they don’t swear in any of the lyrics and - on the surface - they’re not exclusively about sex and drugs. They’re clean cut boys next door that girls would take home to meet pa. So naturally their music is easy-listening pop-rock. - 6/10

Van Coke Kartel
- Francois van Coke (vocals/guitar), Wynand Myburgh (bass guitar) and Justin Kruger (drums).
Read the CD review: Van Coke Kartel
Watch VCK perform live
Free "September Fools" MP3
Watch the "September Fools" music video

“Swanesang” - We all know Francois’ toasted wail is what made Fokof unique but can he play guitar and sing at the same time? Nick Cave nailed it in his Grinderman side-project, but can Francois pull it off? When you see him sing on stage he still gets that twinkle in his eye and you expect at any moment he’s going to moer his guitar to the side and masturbate the microphone like he did back in the good old Fokof days. – 7/10

"Ek Skyn(Heilig)" - Francois and Wynand know how to milk the media better than Paris Hilton. Everyone was talking about the Kartel even before they recorded their first song. They’ve worked out the perfect formula and are sticking to it: PR! - 10/10

“Brand Suid-Afrika” - VCK are staying true to die taal. It worked for Fokof and it will work for Van Coke. Their Afrikaans fans will be die-hard supporters. - 8/10

“Vernietig Jouself” - Francois’ lyrics are unapologetic tales of sex, drugs and rock ‘n roll debauchery. Add some wicked mafia styling into the mix and you’ve got a band hell bent on staying true to rock’s Holy Grail of self-destruction. - 9/10

Final score (out of 40):
aKING – 31
Van Coke Kartel – 34

And the band most likely to be the next Fokofpolisiekar is… Van Coke Kartel

- Annel Malan

Fokofpolisiekar are out. Van Coke Kartel and aKING are in. Does this mean Afrikaner sex, drugs and garage rock angst is finally past its sell-by-date? Or is infectious English pop rock the new cool? We rate them to find out who is staying true to the Fokof spirit and who's kicking whose ass in the popularity stakes.

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