March 16, 2001 13:16


De Facto, featuring ATDI's Cedric and Omar, play a low-key London date...

AT THE DRIVE-IN offshoot band DE FACTO played their debut UK show at LONDON's BARFLY CLUB last night - and NME.COM were there to bring you the first report.

At The Drive-In singer Cedric Bixler and guitarist Omar Rodriguez Lopez were joined by Jeremy Ward (vocals, melodica and effects) and Isaiah 'Ickey' Owens (keyboards and melodica) for a seven-song, low-key set of dub reggae.

An uncharaceristically restrained Bixler swapped his usual vocals and leaping around for drumkit rolls, and Lopez played reverberating bass.

De Facto's set included tracks from their debut EP, the obliquely-titled '456132015', which is released in the UK on March 19 through Grand Royal.

De Facto's songs owed more to the classic dub of Augustus Pablo and King Tubby than to ATD-I's more experimental bent.

The set was largely instrumental, with Ward contributing a few echoey mutters, and rhythm section Bixler and Rodriguez Lopez very much taking a back seat to Ward and Owens' keyboard and melodica duels.

De Facto - who were originally called De Facto Carde Dub - are a long-established project of Bixler's and Lopez's, and hail from their hometown of El Paso, Texas.

They are currently recording an album with Beastie Boys producer Mario Caldato Jr, who also produced their EP. The album is tentatively titled 'Black Hot Chrome', and is set for release later in 2001.

At The Drive-In recently cancelled their European tour due to 'flu and "complete mental and physical exhaustion". Their US tour, scheduled for April, remains unaffected. The rest of At The Drive-In - guitarist/keyboard player Jim Ward, drummer Tony Hajjar and bassist Paul Hinojos - are currently at home in El Paso, preparing for the tour.

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