Belgium might be known for its beer and French fries, but the Belgian music industry is also worth exploring. In this article you’ll find 7 popular ‘local’ bands that are perfect for your Friday night swing. You’ll be singing along before you know it!
Black Box Revelation
Black Box Revelation (previously ‘The Black Box Revelation’) is a Belgian rock band. Singer and guitarist Jan Paternoster started the band in 2005, together with drummer Dries Van Dijck. Their album ‘set you head on fire’ was their big breakthrough in 2007. They even reached music enthusiast across the ocean with this album, which lead to an article in The New York Times. The most popular song of the two headed band is ‘I Think I Like You’ with more than 1.700.000 views on YouTube.
Hooverphonic, also a Belgian rock band (mostly triphop), was formed in the year 1995. The band consists of 4 musicians, more specifically Alex Callier, Raymond Geerts, Geert Noppe and Geike Arneart. The band became popular in no time and their song ‘2Wicky’ even appeared in the soundtrack of Bernardo Bertolucci’s film called ‘Stealing Beauty’ in 1996. After that, Hooverphonic wasn’t only successful in Belgium, but also on international level. This year, 2021, the band will represent Belgium at the Eurovision Song Contest with their track ‘The Wrong Place’.
Oscar and the Wolf
Enough of rock. Let’s talk about electropop! Oscar and the Wolf, with frontman Max Colombie, is active since 2010. The band’s album ‘Entity’ was responsible for their boost of success in 2014. Among others, ‘Princes’ is a well appreciated track on this album with over 13.000.000 views on YouTube. Their recently released single ‘James’ is doing quite good as well.
Triggerfinger is another Belgian rock band, born in Lier in the year 1998, and was founded by Ruben Block (vocal and guitar), Wladimir Geels (bass) and Mario Goossens (drum). In 2003 Geels made room for bassist Paul Van Bruystegem. The trio mostly plays stonerrock, hardrock and bluesrock. Triggerfinger is known for their interactive concerts. They’ve set foot on stages at Pukkelpop, Rock Werchter, Pinkpop, and even the Barclaycard British Summer Time Festival in Hyde Park (Londen). One of their most popular songs must be ‘I Follow Rivers’, released in 2012.
This alternative rock band is a must know. The Antwerp band consists of brothers Sam Bettens and Gert Bettens, keyboard player Reinout Swinnen and drummer Wim Van der Westen. In the early 90’s, Sam and Bert formed a band called The Basement Plugs. During that time, Sam was noticed by a record label and that’s where their popularity began to grow. Does their hit single ‘Not An Addict’ (1995) sound familiar?
Let’s go for something different now. Bazart is an indiepop band, formed in 2012, with solely Dutch songs. But even just the melodies are worth listening to. The band is known for their floaty and alternative style. These past few years they have conquered a lot of young adult hearts, but actually the band is popular with all age groups. Go check out their hit single ‘Goud’ (golden in English) which counts almost 5 million views on youtube.
And last but not least, Balthazar band. We’re staying in the same genre, but Balthazar does write English song texts. The 5 headed band’s popularity goes beyond the Belgian borders. In 2011 they even signed a European contract with the record distributor ‘Play It Again Sam’ (PIAS recordings). Recently they’ve released their new album ‘Sand’ with tracks as ‘halfway’, ‘losers’ and ‘You Won’t Come Around’.
Have fun discovering the Belgian music industry, and let us know which band turns out to be your favourite!