Yesterday, when I spoke to the Overthrow’s owner, Joey Goodwin, he was excited because Shepard Fairey had just walked into his location at 9 Bleecker with Debbie Harry, the subject of Fairey’s new mural across the street from Overthrow.
Eventually, we got around to talking about the new space. Goodwin felt it was a natural fit for his fledgling brand, which plays up counterculture. After all, Sophia Lamar, who appeared in a promo video for Overthrow when it first launched, used to host the legendary Berliniamsburg electroclash party at Trash Bar’s predecessor, Club Luxx. It’s been a long time since I went to Club Luxx and, upon asking someone whether they were in line for the bathroom, was told, “No, this is the drug line.” But Goodwin says he’s “keeping the aura of what was there.”
“Trash Bar is not Equinox,” Goodwin observed, referring to the chain that came to Bedford Avenue last year. That said, the former Trash Bar space had received a paint job by the time Overthrow planted a boxing ring and some Abby Hoffman-inspired “Steal This Bag” punching bags inside of it, so don’t expect that dive bar smell. “It smells pretty nice, actually,” Goodwin said.
Do expect some interesting touches from Overthrow’s art director, John Gagliano, whose band Art School Dropouts used to play shows at Trash Bar, as well as artists like East Village fixture Jim “Mosaic Man” Power, who created a “Do the Fight Thing” mosaic (there’s also a Spike Lee poster on the wall, in case you didn’t catch the reference).
Twiggy Levy, a New Mexico artist who spent time at Trash Bar when she lived in Williamsburg, created a stained-glass pool-hall light of the Williamsburg Bridge.
Given that Overthrow’s rent is significantly higher than Trash Bar’s, Goodwin realizes he’s arriving in Williamsburg at a critical point in its history. His location is also right on the border of the Williamsburg traditionally known as Los Sures and the Williamsburg that recently got a Flywheel. “It really puts pressure on me to create this concept to bring old and new together,” Goodwin acknowledged, “because [Overthrow] really sits in the middle of the residents that were already there and the new, young gentrifiers. And I’m a gentrifier myself, in a lot of ways, but I think it’s so important to just bring that together.”
In order to “bring in young people that wouldn’t get to go to a SoulCycle or a Barry’s Boot Camp because of the price,” he’s planning to offer a “local Los Sures” rate of $12 per class rather than $34.
By the way, you may recall Overthrow’s anti-Trump truck. As you can see from its roll-down gate, it’s still throwing punches.