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You can run but you can’t hide forever: COLD WORLD interview

punkrockhardcorefolketc
10 août 2008

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Entrevue avec Nick Woj, drummer et tête dirigeante du groupe de Wilkes-Barre,PA qui vient de sortir son premier album pour Deathwish le mois dernier.

«Dedicated To Babies Who Came Feet First» Why such a title? Where does it come from? The signification behind it if there is on?

It’s a line from a Raekwon song that always stood out to me. There’s no big meaning behind it, it just means dedicated to kids who were sort of on their own from a young age. We used it on a shirt a while ago and we decided to roll with it for the LP title because it’s a cool message and it’s unique.

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Who took the cover picture? Why such a violent/dark picture? Does it represent the world you’re describing in your song? What does the band name COLD WORLD represent/mean/describe for you?

All of the pictures used in the layout were taken by our friend Adam Rifkin’s dad in the 70′s. He just took pictures of crazy old people and wild little kids in Wilkes-Barre. The pictures don’t necessarily tie into the songs themselves but they definitely represent the vibe of the band perfectly. Our lyrics are mostly negative and the music’s heavy so we couldn’t necessarily go with Happy Land for the band name. The kind of hardcore we’re influenced by was always a release of hard-edged aggression from dealing with everyday bullshit in the world. Raw Deal, Breakdown, Life Of Agony, etc. You get the idea of what the majority of the songs are going to be about from the name and you could easily say the same thing about Cold World.

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What was your first reaction when you walked into the studio and saw Billy from Biohazard? Why did you choose him? What’s your favourite Biohazard record?

It was a cool feeling knowing that we were going in to work with him and get to know him. We’ve played with Leeway, Underdog, some form of the Cro-Mags and other great bands so we’re used to meeting and playing with our hardcore idols, so it wasn’t necessarily a shock. Don’t get me wrong though, we were definitely geeked a little. We chose him because it seemed like every band was working with the same 2 or 3 producers and you could easily predict how the record is going to sound. Working with Billy, we couldn’t even predict how this record was going to turn out! This is a weird answer but State of the World Address is probably my favourite because they really stepped up their song writing and had cool guests and shit but they kept the hard parts. That’s what I wanted to do with this record and I actually told Billy that I wanted this to be our SOTWA when we first went into the studio.

On your EP on Lockin’ Out your lyrics made many references to hip-hop/rap classic. Is it the same thing this time around? Are you a hardcore «kid» loving hip-hop/rap or a hip-hop head playing in a hardcore band?

There’s a few lyrical references on the LP but they’re not limited to hip-hop this time around. My favorite kind of music is by far hip-hop but I’m definitely a hardcore kid. It sounds corny but hardcore is a community. You can get a band together and be touring within 3 months or so. You can’t really say that about any other non punk-related genre.

When you finished the recording of this new release, how did you describe it to long time friends and people who really know hardcore? By that I mean hardcore initiates.

Another great question! I remember telling people that it was just a more extreme version of Cold World. The weird parts are weirder, the soft parts are softer, the heavy parts are heavier, etc.

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Hardcore is a wheel that turns pretty fast and not that much at the same time. Are we living a good period for hardcore right now? Do new bands really bring something interesting? Is there still a sense of community in the «scene»?

We’re living in a horrible time for music in general. I’m not saying that there isn’t good music coming out, but it’s reduced to being next to worthless. People download records a month before it comes out, listen to it twice on their Ipod or computer and they move on to whatever the next record is to leak. I’m very guilty of it too and that’s how I know it’s a problem. As for hardcore, there’s nothing I can say that hasn’t been said before. Every generation thinks the next generation has lost something so it’s hard to say. There have been a handful of bands that did something new and cool in the last couple years. Justice, World Collapse, Rhythm to the Madness, Blacklisted and Trapped Under Ice all come to mind. The majority of bands don’t really grab me though. It seems like everybody’s going through a routine and are afraid to let loose. Blacklisted just released a milestone of a record and I think it’s really fucked up that people aren’t recognizing it for what it is. It just shows that kids are so locked into the same song and dance. With that said, there’s definitely still a community within the scene. I’ve met so many people through Cold World and so many people have helped us out in one way or another.

Are things depressing in America right now with the war on Iraq and the inevitable economic depression coming or it’s looking bright with the possible election of Obama?

It’s really depressing here right now. I’m not really into politics so most people reading this probably know more than me about it but I’m definitely scared for the future. Obama is a glimmer of hope at the end of a long dark tunnel. The south and the midwest are crazy though, I can definitely see him losing. Those places actually scare me. I hate going there.

Would you rather read a John Joseph bio or a Big L bio?

We’ve all read the Hardware Fanzine interviews hundreds of times and then the book he did, so we know pretty much all we’re gonna know about John Joseph. There’s so much mystery behind Big L, so I’d definitely be more interested in his bio. L’s brother was a crazy street dude who was locked up for most of L’s career and L was actually killed over his brother’s beef with somebody so it would be cool to get the whole story on that. Also everyone says that he was about to sign to Rocafella right before he was killed but it’s never really been confirmed so that would be cool to read about in detail. I’m really into books about music. I probably shouldn’t say this but I don’t even own a book that isn’t music-related.

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