Left handed guitar player Rob Orlemans launches his heavy rock band RFB in 1982, helped out by band mates Fred Hillebrand on bass and Ben Spitsbaard on drums. Their band name is formed by the initial letters of each band member, by the way. Already at an early stage, Ben Spitsbaard is replaced by Ben van der Velden. Luckily, Rob found a new drummer called Ben, otherwise the band name would have to be changed as well. The music of RFB sounds quite heavy and could be compared to a softer version of MOTÖRHEAD with rock and roll influences from bands like PAT TRAVERS and ZZ TOP. The most striking part is the rather heavy guitar sound by Orlemans and the rock and roll style of the songs. The tracks “If I Could Do It Again” and “Stuck” appear on a compilation album of Varagram in 1982, while the song “Can't Find My Way” (co-written by Jos Veldhuizen of FLAVIUM and TEASER) appears on the compilation EP “Metal Power 4” in 1984. The band gained a lot of success in their years of existence, played many shows and even had their own fan club and a fan club magazine. In 1985, RFB release the single “Hold On The Line” b/w “Heartbreakin' Woman” on the Ivory Tower label. This is also the last piece of vinyl, released by the band. The future looked very bright for them, but not too long after this release, several members decided to call it quits. Ben and Fred continued their career in bands like FOUR ROSES, MONTEZUMA and later on ZUMA. Rob Orlemans started his own band ROB ORLEMANS & HALF PAST MIDNIGHT, which became very successful. Even today, many years later, it still exists and HIGHWAY CHILE/HELLOÏSE drummer Ernst van Ee is part of the line-up of this band, with Piet Tromp on bass and Rob Orlemans on guitar.
In 2012, Orlemans releases a DVD about RFB, which tells their story in about fifty minutes. You can hear most of their songs and also see some nice backstage footage. The band really meant a lot for the hard rock scene in our country and without the input of people like Rob Orlemans, things would have looked very different indeed. Respect for this man!
(text conducted by Toine van Poorten)
Rob Orlemans – guitar/vocals (ex-CONUS, ex-SPRINTER, HALF PAST MIDNIGHT)
Fred Hillebrands – bass
Ben Spitsbaard – drums (ex-MARTYR)
Ben ven der Velden - drums
*unknown (compilation album Varagram 1982; tracks "If I Could Do It Again" & "Stuck)
*Metal Power 4 (compilation EP 1984)
*“Hold On The Line” b/w “Heartbreakin' Woman” (single 1985 Ivory Tower)
*Heavy Rockband Documentary 1982-1986 (DVD 2012 independent)