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Jason Ladewig


City: New York
Venue: Rothko
Date: 2004-05-14
The NYC monthly Flyer magazine has been consistently churning out its free publication for some years now, letting us New Yorkers know what's happening music/club wise. No matter how in the loop you think you are, there's always something happening you otherwise wouldn't know about without Flyer (music business glitterati/scum bags not with standing), which always makes it pleasure to read on the train or where ever. They also seem to have a knack for hand picking fun and relevant artists for their anniversary bashes (last year there was DJ Twitch form the legendary Glaswegian night club Optimo). This year they threw their anniversary gig at the newish NYC club Rothko, a space with a good but not great sound system, high ceilings, and a bar not fit for the mass attending the evening in question. I showed up with a friend about 30 minutes before the night's biggest attraction, France's dub-y postpunk-inspired Colder, were to take the stage, performing as four piece (where the instrumentation was solely execute by the one Marc Ngyuen Tan). James "Fucking" Freedman was in the house playing some fucking records for the pack of hipsters, industry types, journalist, music fans, et al. The music was dance while the crowd was stand (lets hope Rothko didn't blow their money on that cursed NYC cabaret license!). My friend and I ordered our first round of beers with relative ease, as one would expect or hope. Two empty beer bottles later and Colder were about to take the stage. Naturally we wanted some fresh brews to nurse during the set, so I went to the bar only to wait 20 minutes only to give up beerless (and the slow mixing of Cosmopolitans only added to the frustration). So I watched about half of Colder's set waiting and waiting and waiting and waiting at the bar. If that doesn't sound like a good way to see a band, it was even worse actually doing it. However, I gave Colder as much attention as I could. Not really being familiar with their recorded output, the Joy Division tagline instantly stood out, but less in a poseur a la Interpol sort of way and more in an urban decay, the world is actually a scary place sort of way (they also could have dropped Suicide on the press release I think). The music was always tasteful but not something really to write home about (unless your Mom likes bands with blatant reference points). But the refreshing thing about seeing a postpunk inspired band in 2004 was that I got the feeling they listened to dub reggae as much as the postpunkers of the Britain did in the late '70s/early '80s. The bass was thick, deep and physically felt (and it's been many a show I could say that about!). But still, where's my beer!? I gave up on the bartenders and watched the rest show feeling like an alcoholic on the first day of recovery while the crowd gave Colder love after each song. The even got them to play an encore as my friend and I split for pint at bar down the street. Colder: thanks for the bass tones. Rothko: get more bar tenders you cheap bastards.

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