La Coterie
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La Coterie

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"La Coterie"

I first came across La Coterie in the most unlikely of places. Nestled in a back alley in DC is the underground skate park named Fight Club. It is here that DC skaters unite to shred their homemade bowl and listen to the newest DC music. I was there skating when, from the back stage, I heard a combination of punk, jazz, and hardcore. I soon noticed that this wasn’t your typical DC underground punk band. This band, La Coterie, offered a unique take on experimental music by incorporating a violin and trumpet, and blended it with the classical styling of punk rock and hardcore. The musical backdrop, coupled with the momentum-filled atmosphere of the park, created a pretty rad evening.

Fast forward to a blustery 6th of January. Nestled into the window stage of Asylum in Adams Morgan, La Coterie prepared play their unique blend of punk. Moments before, the band’s front woman Christina joined Pigeons Playing Ping-Pong for some funky trumpeting, which boasted her skills as a well trained and disciplined musician. The atmosphere of Asylum that night, although vastly different from Fight Club, shared the same electricity as the skate park and La Coterie was center of the enthusiastic crowd.

La Coterie’s music is fast, dense, and dark. Right from the beginning you can hear classical arrangements and see the punk attitude. I was amazed at how well the violin fit their sound. Between carrying the melody and plucking the strings percussively, Katey’s violin playing makes you wonder why you don’t hear bands that incorporate these sounds more often.

One highlight of the show was “Surf Song”, which played heavily with the idea of ordered chaos. Immediately Sonic Youth sprung to mind. A mind-bending take on the classic form of surf-rock this song left the crowd bouncing with excitement and entranced by the dense form of the arrangement. Another song that caught my attention was the ballad “Mablean.” Channeling Tom Waits, Christina showed that vocals can be unique and engaging without catering to the pop music molds we are so used to hearing.

By the end of the night, I left the room with new thoughts on what DC has to offer musically. Unlike many pop and indie bands that have taken the district by storm, La Coterie plays to take over your mind. They are not concerned with categorization. And whether or not you hear punk or jazz, you will agree it is all a brush to create their art. - Districtofsound.com


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Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

La Coterie is a five piece rock band that incorporates trumpet, violin and keyboard in with traditional rock instruments. The band was formed in the Spring of '08 by Christina just as she was finishing up her Bachelor's of Music at the University of Maryland. Original band members Anton and Katey offer up a mixture of classical and punk sound with Anton occasionally on the vocals. With mainly female vocals and writing contribution by all band members, La Coterie creates a melodic piano rock sound with a hint of punk and jazz.