Rye Coalition: The Story of the Hard Luck 5

New Jersey’s mischievous noise terrorists The Rye Coalition were one of the hundreds of bands from the heyday of underground rock to pass through Chico in the mid-1990s, and in The Story of the Hard Luck 5, filmmaker Jenni Matz builds a case for why the band matters. Rye Coalition birthed its grimy soul in Jersey’s dark, crowded basement parties, sometimes setting the drummer’s kit ablaze in the most hazardous conditions. This act was perhaps the perfect metaphor for the magnetic heat of youth and the impetuous dynamics of the Coalition’s incendiary artistic expression. It was Dave Grohl who produced what was to be the band’s major label debut on Dreamworks. However, during the recording of the album (eventually named Curses and released on independent Gern Blandsten), Dreamworks was absorbed by Universal, casting a wad of bands to the wind. As the documentary beautifully shows, Rye Coalition continued on a foundation of the things money can never secure: family, friends and the adventurous band’s determination to strike the right chord to the world’s ear.