Locals Only: Coward

These Columbia-based musical scientists give experimental a new meaning.

By Lauren Rutherford | Nov. 30, 2012

Tags: Music

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Local band Coward is anything but fearful. In fact, fearless might be a better term for the group.

Five years ago, the members of Coward were all part of a different band that wasn’t going the direction they wanted. Naturally, to solve their dilemma, band members decided to play a different instrument.

“We really just wanted to mix stuff up,” bassist Paul Baughman says. “We were tired of being so sure of what we were. We wanted to see what happened if we moved instruments around and let the music write itself.”

Pretty cool, right? The music that was born from this experiment proved to be exactly that: experimental. Baughman says Coward’s music doesn’t fit into a typical genre; it’s more of a mishmash of everything band members listen to, making it more unique. Ironically, even though the tunes are a result of an experiment and mixture of genres, Coward’s instrumentals aren’t the least bit messy.

“All the songs are written and very delicately combed out,” Baughman says. “We try to mess with time signatures and do a lot of math with the music but still make it poppy and listenable.”

A performance by Coward is just as precise. Since the group is only instrumental, there isn’t one front man. Baughman says fan can expect to see Coward as simply Coward this Friday night at Roxy’s.

“We don’t try present ourselves on stage. We just try to put forth the music on stage,” he says. “There’s no real stage show. … It’s just more of fall into it and let the music take you where it takes you.”

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