Sidetracked with Boompie Alleen — breaking down stereotypes

sidetracked
[notice]A monthly interview column in which Mike Beets tunes into the heartbeat of Christian musicians and the SA Christian music industry.[/notice]

BOOMPIEALLEEN
Boompie Alleen, a new Afrikaans Rock Band devoted to making music for God.

In an overfilled and saturated Christian music market originality is more often than not overlooked and forced to take the back seat in favour of the perception of what listeners want. Every so often a band comes along that bluntly and bravely attempts to break down the stereotypes that have festered so deeply in the back of our minds. When I came across “Boompie Alleen” I had no idea what to expect from these new kids on block, judging from the name I thought that we were in for more of the same. When I finally got my hands on some of their songs I was blown away. Their website states that their music is designed to solely and exclusive glorify the name of God while they fearlessly do just that it is their hard rock sound that really caught my attention. With powerful distortion driven guitars, majestically solid drumming and a hauntingly beautiful female voice driving the sound home these guys were almost sounding too good to be true.

Needles to say I was as excited as an adolescent teenage girl at a One Direction concert when I got to sit down and have a bit of Q and A with lead guitarist, Theuns Van Wyk. With their debut EP, “RockPrysing” freshly released and available as a free download it was time to get to know the band a little better.

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Gateway News: “Boompie Alleen” is such an interesting name, how did you guys decide on it?Boompie Alleen: It references Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. It’s a metaphor for our daily confrontation with the Tree of Knowledge in the challenges we face and the choices we make. Do you “eat” from the tree or not? And then of course taking responsibility for the choices you made, because you “alone” made them.

GN: Tell us more about the band, who plays what and how did you guys get together?
BA: Rita’s our lead vocalist; I look after the guitars and some backing vocals. Eckard slaps the base, and Deo’s the timekeeper. Rita and I are siblings, so we know each other from when we use to pull each other’s hair in bro-sis kiddie fight carnage! The rest of us met each other at our church playing in the worship band.

GN: What is the band’s vision and did you guys always have the idea of making music for Jesus?
BA: Afrikaans music with distortion guitars and heavy drums is typically not associated with Jesus. The whole idea with Boompie Alleen is to challenge the mould of that. So jip – we formed for the sole purpose of making music for God.

GN: Your EP “RockPrysing” was just released, tell us more about the album; where did you record and how was the experience in studio?
BA: “RockPrysing” is wordplay on “Lofprysing”, the Afrikaans for praise and worship. We wanted to add the rock dimension through heavy guitars and punching drums, yet with lyrics that stay true to the message that Jesus is our hope and salvation. We recorded the album at my home studio in Pretoria – was a lot of fun.

GN: Who is in charge of song writing or is it a collective effort?
BA: I wrote and composed all of the songs. I play drums too so I had specific ideas about how the riffs and the drums would play off each other and work together. Rita contributed a lot with vocal melodies and lines. Eckard interpreted the riffs and drums I laid down and added his own flavour in his baselines to compliment the songs.

GN: A couple of the songs on the EP is connected to Psalms, are all the songs Biblical inspired or do you draw inspiration elsewhere too?
BA: Most of us grew up in conservative Afrikaans churches, where the Psalms were what we used to sing during sermons. So I developed a deep love for what those songs represent and have fond memories of singing them in church. As I grew older and got more into my instruments, I realized that playing them became pervasive to who I am. So it was a natural progression that while we were in church, singing those psalms, I would be adding drums or guitars to them in my head. And that is what planted the seed of incorporating parts of them into our rock praise anthems. Apart from those psalms, each song was written to try and capture a specific feeling or emotion linked to my relationship with God. Whether it’s shouting God’s name and awesomeness from the roof tops, or being stuck in a rut after sinning again, begging for forgiveness, and God being my salvation and hope!

GN: Personally I think its awesome that the EP is available for free download, what made you guys decide to go this route?
BA: For us our music is about reaching people that the Afrikaans gospel scene does not cater for very well. Giving them something to bob their heads to, but with a message unashamedly focused on Christ and his love and glory. We wanted to remove all restrictions and hurdles to people getting an earful of our music, so we decided we wanted to make it available as a free download from our website.

GN: How would you sum up “Boompie Alleen’s” message in a couple of sentences?
BA: Our message centres around God’s awesomeness and us exalting Him. There is also a dimension of our music that focuses on us being caught up in sin/suffering, but with the realization that God provides hope and love for us in those situations.

GN: Where can we catch you guys live?
BA: We just played a show with One Crown when we launched the album (they are such cool dudes!!! – check them out). We are hoping to play at the 2015 #Imagine conference/experience, although that has not yet been confirmed. Check out www.boompiealleen.co.za or our facebook page – we will announce any shows on there.

GN: How important and relevant is the message of Jesus Christ in our day and age?
BA: There is a lot of pain and suffering today. At the same time we are all very self reliant to fix the problems and challenges we encounter. It’s all about planning for contingencies, being proactive and preventing bad things from happening. So we have to be in control and do everything ourselves. Problem with this thinking is that none of us can. Jesus having died for us and bringing us salvation is the wonderful way we should be dealing with these issues. That being said I too really struggle with relinquishing control, but that’s why were here – on a journey.

Go to www.boompiealleen.co.za right now and download this awesome EP, its free and it might just open up a new world of worship for you. These guys are extremely talented musicians with an enormous love and passion for Jesus, plus they are giving away free music too! “Boompie Alleen is a fresh and solid new band in the Christian music scene, their message is simple and their songs are beautiful. Swimming upstream from what we have come to expect from Christian music in South Africa, but hey, I never liked downstream anyway.

For info and bookings you can contact the band at boompiealleenband@gmail.com
Their full EP is available at www.boompiealleen.co.za
You can follow them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Boompie-Alleen/1496340780601630

One Comment

  1. I attended Boompie Alleen’s show and I was blown away by their performance. Go to their website. You will not be disappointed