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Coliseum at Vacation Vinyl on Monday, June 27th, 2011

Ryan Patterson is an imposing figure, tall, short hair with a beard, all arm tattoos and piercing eyes, wearing a t-shirt saying ‘Life is struggle, Life is pain’ under the color-reversed logo of Black Flag. And his music, just like his band name, had a hard time to fit inside the small Vacation Vinyl records, where he and his two band mates were performing the second in-store of the day.

If the word Coliseum makes you think about something huge, colossal and a little monstrous, you would think right, the Louisville trio was visibly happy to play in such an intimate location, but the place could hardly contain their furious powerful hardcore sound, and the walls were about to explode at every eruption of their songs. I bet people could hear them far away, from the streets, and I was happy to have my earplugs.

Patterson’s vocals were raw and raucous, the rhythm of the music was fast and nervous, the type that would make you throw things against the walls, Carter Wilson’s drumbeats were violent and aggressive and Mike Pascal was carrying the rhythm of the songs with his bass and a permanent-stoned-looking smile on his face.

Between songs, Ryan Patterson seemed like the calmest guy in the room, and even his ‘fucking’ sounded peaceful and good-natured, but as soon as they started another of their songs, green Hulk was unleashed again. He thanked the crowd for being there, a Monday night! And thanked us for liking what they do, this kind of hardcore stuff, uncompromising and uninfluenced by the current music trends.

Thanks to Vacation Vinyl, I had been exposed to a lot of metal and hardcore recently, something quite new for me, and I must say that Coliseum were excellent, releasing some empowering energy, effortlessly, sometimes more rock than hardcore. They had a Black Flag sticker on one of their guitar case, but comparisons to Motörhead has also been made in some blogs; I would agree, although Patterson said during the show that Glenn Danzig had been a real inspiration for him, before covering one of his songs.

Two shows in a row made the temperature inside the store quite unbearable, but before leaving, Patterson announced that Coliseum will do another performance in LA on Friday July 1st, for ‘Twin Infinities’ at Nomad art Gallery, an art show which will bring together photographers, poets, comic book artists, painters and musicians. A surely interesting crowd…


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