When we first heard Harlem (not actually from Harlem but Austin), we jammed their songs nonstop and immediately hit the band up for an interview. In the interest of democracy, they said they’d prefer to answer questions over email so they’d all get a chance to talk. Email Q+As are typically dry city, so we asked the band a couple basic questions then told them to go nuts. What follows is a series of answers that may or may not be true, but Harlem’s album Free Drugs, with lines like “I hate every book I’ve ever read” sung passionately through blown amp fuzz, has already convinced us to not worry about the veracity of their words. Download our current favorite track, appropriately titled “Red Herring” below, and buy Free Drugs from Harlem’s MySpace, so you can feel like not giving a shit about life is actually kind of cool for at least half an hour.
Download: Harlem, “Red Herring”
What’s the story behind Harlem? How long have you guys been playing together?
We met in Debate Club. Curtis was the bad boy of our school, Christian was the beautiful cheerleader and Coomers was the goth. What’s weird about this question is how the first time we met we debated how long we had been a band together. So we don’t even know how to answer the second part of that question.
How’d you end up being called Harlem if you’re from Texas?
We haven’t really decided on a name yet.
Christian want to call it Miami Beach Towels,
Coomers wants to call it Christianity
Curtis wants to call it Crystal Bowels.
What bands were big influences on you guys?
Coomers: I made up a dance to Paula Abdul’s “Opposites Attract” where I played both Paula and the wolf. Are they a band or did they just do a video together?
Curtis: The first tape single I ever got was “Another Baby” by Ace of Base. [Ed. "All That She Wants"]
Christian: My mom would put me and my sister to bed with Sade and Crowded House. My dad would wake us up with Yes and Rush.
What’s the most boring show you’ve ever played?
Practicing in the living room and arguing about songs. We have like a million of those shows booked for awhile. All booking inquiries send to firstname.lastname@example.org
What’s the one record you each never get tired of?
Christian: Neu!, 2
Coomers: Plastic Ono Band
Curtis: Leadbelly, The Jail Tapes