The end of the Cog

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By Bob Gass

Omaha’s favorite D.I.Y., The Cog Factory, has shut its doors after a near seven-year run of great shows, memorable bands and all-out fun.

On Friday, Jan. 11, the final show was played by Well Action Squad, Race for Titles, 138, Musico and the Carsinogents. The show was of mild attendance and destruction of the venue began that night, when the venue’s outcome was decided.

Throughout the show, band members, along with members of the audience, began to kick more holes in the walls and punch holes in the ceiling. One of the bands made a comment about how it wished the Cog would just shut down, not realizing the situation. Throughout the evening, the building was stripped of all posters and just about any souvenir suitable to be taken and the night came to a close.

Staff at the Cog said the decision was inevitable and that they had received a letter with the final amount of what was owed to the IRS and a notice that the property could be seized at any time.

Discussions about closing the Cog had been held since last summer, when some of the shows just weren’t getting a lot of attendance and the combined problems of a leaky ceiling, stage repair and other matters were just weighing on the venue’s financial means.

The tragedy of it all is the days of the $5 shows are over. It leaves Omaha’s music scene with a big hole in it, where bands that don’t fit into the normal genre have no room to grow or play.

A lot of crappy bands started at the Cog factory and a lot of crappy bands turned into great bands and went on to tour the country. Bands on the Saddle Creek label have played there before their followings got too big. Omaha has truly lost a great asset.

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