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Heat up with the Cold Smoke festival 

The one-day music fest has reggae, rock, pop, funk and DJs.

click to enlarge Dub Kartel in warmer times. - CURTIS ROTHNEY
  • Dub Kartel in warmer times.
  • CURTIS ROTHNEY

Just as the weather finally turns to winter, Halifax's favourite reggae band, Dub Kartel, has lined up the third annual Cold Smoke festival. This kick-ass one-day fest will be setting fire to The Seahorse and the Marquee's stages to keep you hot-hot-hot. 

Starting Saturday night, Cold Smoke will showcase some of the best bands from Halifax of all genres: the dance-hall of Dub Kartel, the moody pop of Vogue Dots and Arsoniste, rock and roll from Like a Motorcycle, The Brood and Chronos Band, funk from Stephen Lewis & The Big Band of One, as well as DJ sets by Goldliocks and Dead Horse Beats, with visuals and projections by Wasko AV and PsyPhi. 

"It's a super-tight cross-section of amazing Halifax music, run by extremely passionate people who want to promote talent in this city, and also me," says Patrick Wade (AKA Dead Horse Beats), who now DJs from Montreal but stays connected to the Halifax scene by performing and working with local artists. Lately, he's been producing Dub Kartel's "excellent" upcoming debut full-length album—he's currently mixing tracks that were recorded in sessions this time last year. 

Wade, whose musical style draws on funk, house and contemporary rap, has already put out many banging releases and remixes, and he's preparing to release his next EP in just a couple weeks on the Brooklyn-based Bastard Jazz label. "I've been working on a lot of new stuff with more live instrumentation and singers," he says, with plans for two more releases on vinyl later this year, his first vinyl printings. 

"People should come out to Cold Smoke because we've set up this beautiful night of all-local Maritime music from start to finish," says Dub Kartel's Kyle McCracken, one of Cold Smoke's organizers. The variety of artists offers something for everyone, and Dub Kartel's set alone promises all the warmth of the Caribbean Sea. 

"If you've seen Dub Kartel live, you know what their energy is like," says Wade. "And I think that energy translates into everything they're involved in, including Cold Smoke."


Cold Smoke 2016
Saturday, January 9, 9:30pm-2am
Marquee Ballroom & The Seahorse Tavern 2037 Gottingen Street
$15 adv/$20 door

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