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von Frickle
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VON FRICKLE is a musical Exploration, combining odd time signatures and bizarre tones for a one of a kind sound ranging from ambient space jams to experimental rock to atonal noise riffs. Musical comparisons match influences including King Crimson, early Pink Floyd, 1970's Miles Davis, the Residents and Frank Zappa. The music of Von Frickle is often referred to by fans as ultra-novel science fiction music. There is an oddity in the music that fits well with those of odd taste! Rhythmically aggressive and melodically surprising, Von Frickle is unlike any band you have ever heard before. A quartet that can quickly turn quirky complicated riffs into haunting melodic grooves, leaving the listener wondering what's coming next.
Why this name?
Why Von Frickle was formed:

VF was conceived as a fully functional instrumental band that would never play backup to a lead vocalist. As musicians, all of us have at one time written an ultra cool yet bizarre lick only to have it vanquished by a spineless lead singer. You know the riff in 7/4 with a triplet delay, mondo distortion and harmonic feedback so loud it makes you sterile. Well with that idea in mind Von Frickle was conceived. Musically anything goes; spasmodic leads, odd rhythms, textured polyphonic vibrations, electronic noise, atmospheric crude and of course beautiful melodies all blend together to make Von Frickle truly unique. Listen and prepare for assimilation!

P.S. (I named the band after my great great uncle, Baron Fredrick Von Frickle.)
Do you play live?
VF plays clubs around the midwest and several other galaxies. The fans are great and we love playing for them. One time on juno6 an overly intoxicated antarian perform various tubelar
love acts on the entire band during a slow song.
How, do you think, does the internet (or mp3) change the music industry?
It levels the playing field and opens it up wide for the little guy.
Would you sign a record contract with a major label?
Maybe
Band History:
Von Frickle the Sci-Fi Connection


After being wrongly accused of a hideous low gravity crime on their home planet of MJ39X and sanctioned to open space, our homeless psychonauts wandered the galaxy looking for intelligent life forms. Their search for the ultimate cosmic paradise came to an abrupt halt when shipboard complications on the Evolver forced them to crash-land on a tiny, unexplored oxygen and carbon-based orb in a galaxy on the fringes of outer space.

They discovered that the planet was populated by a humanoid subspecies of primitive intelligence that had not yet discovered the secrets of interstellar travel. Though not ideal, they were relieved that they were not stranded on a planet like BMNO2 that was overrun with protoplasmic squid eaters and had no intelligent life to speak of. When they learned that the planet was called Earth, they had to laugh, because it is pronounced the same as the word for a horrible sexually-transmitted disease back on MJ39X.

They crash-landed in a sector known as the United States. They set up a base station on an abandoned farm far out in the country north by north west of Eureka, Illinois. Unable to repair Evolver, our four space aliens resigned themselves to life here on terra firma. Soon they became accustomed to the calming biorhythmic impulses of the water planet and began exploring.

Since the area was largely inhabited by descendants of the German empire, they adopted the surname of Von Frickle. Wanting to learn more about the intricacies of this strange blue orb and the genetic makeup of its inhabitants, our psychonauts formatted their alien supercomputer that survived the crash and plugged into the upper continental crust, downloading the entire world history of planet Earth in less than 240,000 milliseconds.

They quickly discovered that the humanoids were being subliminally brainwashed and strategically manipulated through something called the mainstream mass media. Having themselves been persecuted on their home planet for actions outside the societal nomenclature, they would soon find themselves formulating massive counteractive measures.

They happened upon a popular Midwestern nightclub and discovered that the humanoids of Earth like to congregate to listen to loud, extremely primitive sound patterns, which they call music. Because of its powerful effect on the humanoids, the new alien inhabitants realized that music could be an effective way to communicate with the population of Earth. And as musicians, nobody would question their odd appearance: tall skinny heads with ten-inch tubes for eyes, tails protruding from their posteriors that sport two tiny three-fingered hands, and large green scales for skin.

Within 7 rotations of the planet, they had learned how to utilize various primitive humanoid musical instruments and began presenting nocturnal sound pattern expositions to the humanoid masses designed to free them from the mind-bending mainstream. And so Von Frickle was born. Under the cover of white suits and masks to hide their alien features, they hit the music venues of the Midwest performing their bizarre instrumental music that conceals inaudible high frequency mind-freeing signals.

Any humanoid seeing a Von Frickle concert or buying one of their digital music discs will be unknowingly freeing himself or herself from governmental control. Manchurian candidates will lose their desire to carry out despicable acts and just enjoy life. MOTHERS, FATHERS, PEOPLE IN CARS. All will be liberated and indoctrinated into the ever-increasing alliance of the Secret Centipede Army led by the powerful yet unseen presence of one Dr. Friedrich Von Frickle.

And that is how Von Frickle came to be. Catch a live show, listen to a CD, free yourself form the crippling control of the Mainstream. Induct others into the Secret Centipede Army.

ENJOY>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>N37 (VF Lab Assistant)






Your influences?
King Crimson, The Residents, Frank Zappa,
The Dregs, Amon Tobin, Raymond Scott,
Led Zepplin, Trey Gunn, Suicide Pistol
Favorite spot?
Antarctic Circle.
Equipment used:
Band Equipment List:

Lee: Roland GR50-GR1-GR33 Guitar Synthesizers, Digi-Tech Whammy pedal, Zoom 9050 / 9150, Boss GP100 Preamps, Peavey Tubefex and Classic 50/50 amplifier, Peavey 100 Key amplifier, Fernandes Sustainer, PRS Guitars.

John: Drums (Tama Superstar and vintage Ludwig drum sets), Roland SPD-20 Drum Pad w/FAT pedal, Micro Moog, Boss DD6 Digital Delay, Zoom Effects pedal.

Ken: Brian Moore i2.13 synth controller guitar, Gibson Les Paul Standard, Fender Twin Reverb amplifier, Fender Blues Junior amplifier, Fender KXR100 keyboard amplifier, Roland GR-33 guitar synth, E-Bow, Jim Dunlop JH-4S Rotovibe, Vox V847 Wah-Wah, Digitech XP100 Whammy-Wah, Boss DD-3 digital delay, Boss DD-6 digital delay, Boss CE-3 chorus, MXR Distortion+, 1967 Ludwig floor tom, Tama Starclassic snare drum, Roland SPD-20 percussion pad.

Dan: Fender fretless Precision Bass, Eden 200 watt solid state bass amp with 4x10 cabinet, Axon AX100 pitch to midi converter, Yamaha AN1X analog modeling synth, Yamaha TX16W digital sampler.

Studio Toys:
Farfisa VIP 600, Micro Moog, Korg 800, theremin, Fabulator, gong, glockenspiel, concert bass drum, tympani, Jam Blocks, cowbells, Rototoms, bongos, spokes, Ocean Drum, Pitch and Thunder Tubes, 1918 Conn Eb tuba, 1969 Mirafone Bb Tuba, American Standard upright bass, homemade electric upright bass, Yamaha TX7 FM synth, Yamaha DX27 FM synth, Korg Microkorg synth/vocoder, Korg DW8000, Boss DD-6 digital delay, E-MU Vintage Keys synth module, Digitech GNX2 Talker.


Anything else...?
Von Frickle is…

Lee Fehr: Guitar and guitar synthesizers.

John Ganser: Drums, electronic drum pad, percussion, Moog and other synthesizers.

Dan Meyer: Electric bass, double bass, tuba, and synthesizers.

Ken Thornton: Guitar and guitar synthesizer,
drums, drum pad, and synthesizers.

Von Frickle Discography:

2000 - "Sounds From Inside the Mind of Von Frickle." (VF's groundbreaking debut CD features spasmodic rock riffs and eerie mood-altering soundscapes.)

2001 - "Feeding the Organic Computer." (Post Rock extravaganza. Each track ultra unique its own right. Pure megalomaniac song styling.)

2001 - "The Live Show" (A completely improvised live recording done for radio on the "WGLT Live Show." Contains super-modified drums, bass, and guitars.)

2002 - "Frank Works in a Factory / Beyond Weird Series Episode One." (A dark musical colleague extracted from two nights of improvised jamming.)

2002 - "Vibrate - Transmit - Receive." (Von Frickles' most sonically adventurous release to date. A real prog-rock space adventure. Recorded completely by the band at Fear studios.)

2003 - "Mission 4.9" (Space rock to the max! VF goes four-piece and kicks alien butt from start to finish. Number one in Finland.)

CD's FOR SALE!! Let us known where you live and what CD's you are interested in, and we will send you back the total cost. Send to: vonfrick@mtco.com


Press Reviews…

(Illinois Entertainer -Chicago, IL)

Von Frickle's bag of tricks may not be for everyone, but an open-minded listener should find this synthesizer-based band's Feeding the Organic Computer CD very entertaining. "Bullet Brain" harks back to 1970's jazz with its energetic horn arrangement, and "Mysterious Mr. Wong" is reminiscent of vintage spy movies. The melodic "Scary II" builds an ominous mood through synthesizers and percussion, in contrast to the child like "Crableg Man." The album closes with a pair of slow ambient tracks, "Drone " and "Chemtrails." I highly recommend this album to those who crave the truly unique.


(The Octopus -Bloomington, IL)

Seeing Von Frickle live is like watching a composer at work. A composer who works not only with pens and staff paper, but also with smoke machines, laser lights and seemingly incongruous slide projections of Clan of the Bear Cave and Peter Falk stills. It's strange. It's wonderful. It's dangerous. Von Frickle brings with them an inordinate amount of talent and imagination, a fabulous, psychonautical sense of humor, and four white jump suits. And masks. And lots of gadgets.

One of the reasons why their fan base has continued to grow at an almost exponential rate is that they take risks. During their live shows the sense of risk is palpable. They travel unexplored musical terrain armed only with bass, theremin, drum kit, guitar synth…well perhaps they are well armed. Nevertheless, they are explorers of soundscapes, and most surprisingly for an experimental band, they manage to explore and create these soundscapes while maintaining solid grooves, points of recognition, musical coherency.

Von Frickle is a unique synthesis of musicians and entertainer, traveling circus and postmodern symphony. They are well worth seeing, well worth hearing, well worth joining in their musical expeditions.


(WRTX - Nova Scotia, Canada)

Von Frickle is a wonderfully adventurous cavalcade of musical madness. Four excellent musicians who go where few have ever thought of going. Are these guys really from another planet or are they just that good?

Jean-Étienne Sheehy


(Radio Extreme - Madrid, Spain)

What's in the water over there in the United States? In a word, Von Frickle ultra weird. Their latest release "Mission 4.9" is a complex mixture of loud prog rock and interesting but unusual synthesizer based soundscapes. Melding two such diverse musical forms into a concessive one is no easy task yet this band does it very admirably. My hats off to these guys from Illinois.

Antonio Sanchez.


(River Front Times - St Louis, MO)

Mission 4.9 the latest release from Von Frickle is a load of crap. Musically bizarre and consistently indecipherable. This CD would make great coaster for my many bottles of cheap booze.

Sally Antiradar.


(Welsh Radio - Cardiff, Wales)

Von Frickle - Instrumental Music - The United States.
Mission 4.9 is some of the most creative music that has come out of The United States in a long time. Aggressive intro songs Kablam! and Cranium Controller are dark, heavy and wonderfully infectious. From there it just gets better. My personal favorites are Shape Shifter and Zombie Stomp. Von Frickle may well be the greatest under ground band of the post X generation.

Jonathan Spires


(Innocent Words - Champaign, IL)

Once you have been fortunate to witness a Von Frickle performance in the flesh, two things become readily apparent. first, these four guys are ridiculously talented musicians.
Second, they're just a little bit weird. It's the white jumpsuits and alien masks that they wear that tip most people off to the second part. But once past the weirdness, it is impossible not to appreciate their skills as individuals and as a band.

Their album, Mission 4.9, lets Von Frickle showcase a little less weirdness (some of it still shines through in audio format), and a whole lot of their musical skills.

The best way to describe Von Frickle is instrumental math rock combined with a strange
fascination for aliens. (I'm purposely avoiding the term Sci-Fi rock because that just sounds terrible.)

Von Frickle song titles include "Protoplasmic Squid Eater," "Cranium Controller," and "Petri Dish Incident." The actual songs themselves showcase Von Frickle's ability to navigate through complex musical patterns as a group as well as lee Fehr and Ken Thornton's ability to trade guitar solos and running licks back and forth.

Sure, this is going to be an acquired taste for 95% of the general populous and even the remaining 5% might have problems with a full disc of their spacey, complex instrumentals. but each song demonstrates just how talented Von Frickle is as a band.
Take the parts, make a whole, and appreciate the odd sounds of Mission 4.9.
… Brian Mertz …



Before Von Frickle...
Yes, there was music before Von Frickle. Members (some separately, some together) participated in other musical endeavors including The Something Brothers, The Spelunkers, House of Large Sizes, Tripping Daisy, Water Babies, HUEO, Deadpan Jester, The Rutles, Neil Innes, BJ Thomas, and more.


Fan Mailing List:
Join the secret centipede army and receive information on upcoming shows and CD releases. Just drop us an email at vonfrick@mtco.com, and we will put you on the list.


Booking Information:

Contact: Lee Fehr (vonfrik@mtco.com) (309) 467-4068 (USA)




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