Cold Smoke’s slow burn

The fourth mini-fest packs The Marquee and The Seahorse this Friday.

Charlie Benoit

Cold Smoke w/Dub Kartel, Walrus, Century Egg, Jelly, Alfie, Like A Motorcycle, Ghettosocks, Pineo & Loeb, Bosby, Tomatron, Woozy, Tachichi, The Sensi, Zora the Sultan
Friday, January 13, 10pm
The Marquee Ballroom, 2037 Gottingen Street

Baby, it's cold outside, but the stages inside the Marquee and Seahorse Tavern are about to get toasty on Friday night.

The fourth annual Cold Smoke, a one-day mini-music festival, will showcase several of Halifax's coolest acts, from reggae favourite Dub Kartel to electronic duo Pineo & Loeb and hip-hop heavyweight Alfie.

"It's a good way to support what's going on in the Halifax music scene," says Dub Kartel guitarist and Cold Smoke organizer Charlie Benoit.

"The idea of it is to get different bands from different scenes together in one show to support all the local music, and to get a bigger crowd of people at a bigger venue than they normally would."

Fourteen acts are set to perform on the two stages, and there will be a two-floor visual takeover from Wasko and PsyPhi.

Psychedelic pop ensemble Walrus is expected to draw a big crowd, and guitarist and vocalist Justin Murphy says the mixed musical styles "does a great job at getting people out."

"The Dub Kartel guys get a whole different crowd of people than a normal Walrus show," he says. "More university kids come out, it's not just the typical crowd that comes to a rock show, a lot more people who are into DJs."

And though Murphy remembers "like 10 people" at his first Cold Smoke four years ago ("it was at 10pm though," he stresses), he says turnout to the festival seems to grow every year.

"It's always a good time. A lot of people come back every year," says Benoit.

Although the weather is pretty drab these days, it's clear Halifax's vibrant music scene is heating up —indoors, that is.

"I'm really excited because we got who we wanted to play, it's everyone who's new and exciting in the Halifax music scene," says Benoit. "Walrus is about to take off and have a huge tour, Alfie's got new stuff that's cool—it's all the exciting local acts to see. And it's always fun to play a Marquee show."

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