NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ--Within the warm confines of an off-campus house located on Huntington Street, three students, weighed down by the bags of books on their backs, yet, uplifted by the infinite possibility of music, came together to write their very first song “Horizon Fire.”
It was during this meeting during the start of the fall 2013 semester at Rutgers that one of Hub City’s most novel, alternative folk bands was created.
Individually known as Brian Curry, Steve Shimchick and Jeff Petescia, the trio united under the alias of "Cold Weather Company."
Although each member stands alone for their instrumental talent and vocals, their harmonies coalesce to form tracks that express personal confrontations with misery and contentment found on one's road to self-discovery.
While Cold Weather Company spends their time performing music about the Northeast; their fan base has consequently grown beyond the borders of the Garden State. Cooped up in a freshly painted, former school bus named Blue Bird, the band travels down interstate highways and across state borders to perform their music.
The three members accompanied by Blue Bird, retreated to the Catskill’s to finalize their first album “Somewhere New” which was released on January 22, 2015.
Guitarist and vocalist Brian Curry, stamped this 13-track album with his original photography. The photos depict various scenes of nature, which conceptualizes the overarching theme highlighted throughout the first album.
The band notes that “Somewhere New” largely deals with the theme of escapism and the soothing remedy of nature that can mollify personal grievances, mistakes and hardships.
Now, nearly a year later, the team pre-released their second album, “A Folded Letter” to loyal, hyper-local fans, at New Brunswick’s coffeehouse, Hidden Grounds.
This album was officially released December 14, and can be found across a variety of music distribution platforms such as Spotify, Amazon and Itunes.
The band notes that this album offers a more mature approach to musical expression. CWC emphasizes that escapism is a largely selfish endeavor, one that does not confront issues head on, but passively deals with them.
They collectively nod in agreement that, “we’re all haunted by something--be it memories missed opportunities, insecurities, people we’ve wronged, and mistakes we’ve made-- this album attempts to quell them all. It's an olive branch, to ghost, of sorts”.
This “olive-branch to ghosts” is not only evoked through “tribal-esque” melodies, as Petescia puts it, but is explicitly present in its featured album art.
Curry asserts that “the album photography depicts a sort of paranormal, ghostly scene: three figures coming across floating orbs in the middle of the forest at night”.
While the band has continued to develop their image through photography, music, and progressive topics, the influence of 21st century technologies can’t be overlooked.
Historically, audio equipment has proved a fiscal challenge for bands not signed by a record label. However, with recent advancements in technology, the band managed to record the entire album from the comfort of Curry’s bedroom.
“Granted, the album would sound nothing like it does if it weren’t for the incredible professionality of our friend Ralph Nicastro, who did our mixing, and Alan Douches, who did the mastering, but the thought that three untrained guys could record their own album without a studio is pretty darn cool,” adds Brian.
In addition to the accessibility of recording equipment, Shimchick harnesses the power of social media to reach an audience that would have proved difficult without such tools.
Shimchick tells NBToday that social media has garnered undeniable attention from their fan base. “Its brought us together with so many people who just genuinely love music, and that really can’t be overlooked,” says Steve.
Looking to the future, CWC remains unsure of the road ahead. With ever-growing support from both hyper-local and national fans, they flirt with the possibility of a European tour. But for now, the band continues to illustrate their unique journey in the heart of New Brunswick.