Rolling Stone and SPIN dig them. NPR does, too. iTunes just featured their single "Dressed Sharply" as its "Single of the Week." Yes, the Aussie duo of Kate Cooper and Damon Cox -- better known as An Horse -- have been getting some much-deserved love of late thanks to the recent release of their sophomore effort "Walls."
Since their formation a few years after Seabiscuit galloped into theaters, An Horse has gradually gained momentum with their quirky pop rock sound. Their debut album Rearrange Beds made them indie darlings (my opinion but a good one), and brought them plum opening slots on tour with everyone from Silversun Pickups to Tegan and Sara to college radio legends Death Cab for Cutie.
These days, Cooper (on vocals, guitar) and Cox (on drums), are headlining a spring tour in support of Walls. I spoke with Cooper last week, and chatted about that, the album, and working alongside Cox. I also asked whether or not there's really a battle between Aussies and Kiwis. I think there is.
Before we get to the interview, the duo also graciously gave Huffington Post rights to premiere their brand new music video for the track "Not Mine." The video was shot by Shoot The Player filmmaker Amelia Tovey and photographed by David Sosnow on a chilly day in Coney Island. Check it out below:
After we had made the album, Damon and I were looking through the lyrics trying to figure out what to call the record. He pointed out that I mention the word 'walls' a lot. I guess I didn't realize. Once Damon pointed it out and I went through and looked at the lyrics as a whole, Walls as a title really makes sense and suits the vibe of the album.
Got it. Describe the process of making the album?
We made the record last summer in Vancouver. The weather was beautiful for the entire month, which apparently is unheard of. Howard Redekopp, who produced the album, was such a great guy and it was just a very enjoyable and easy process. Howard also cooked for us most days and made a point of cooking food on the BBQ so we felt at home. It was generally a very good time. I know we worked very hard but because it was so enjoyable and we were in the one place for over a month, it seemed like a breeze.
Sounds great, and, delicious - well the barbecue. Anyway, do you get on each other's nerves?
We do very well considering how much time we spend together. There is the occasional headlock, but for the most part, we are very easy going.
It seems it. If someone asked someone else what "An Horse" sound like? What would you say?
I would say "Oh I don't know, you can probably listen to some in a record store or online."
But, would you say you have a signature sound?
I don't think we are reinventing the wheel, but we definitely sound like An Horse. I think we surprise a lot of people with how big we can sound considering there is just the two of us.
Do you enjoy touring?
You'd want to hope so considering how much we do it! For the most part, I feel very lucky to be able to do this. There are definitely some days when you just want to be at home on the couch or with your loved ones. I guess that's the case with any job.
True that. You're from Australia -- I'm curious -- is there really a hatred between Aussies and Kiwis? If not, can we say there is?
I don't honestly think there is any animosity. I guess there are jokes and jabs but it's not ever something I have bought into. I think we are good neighbors at the bottom of the world and we can both laugh at ourselves pretty easily. But by all means you can say there is. Mention that episode of the Flight of the Concords with the thieving Australian.
Done and done. Last question and quite possibly the most important. Being a famous duo... I'm curious who would win in a fight between An Horse, Tegan & Sara, Matt & Kim, and The Ting Tings?
You mean between all four bands? Oh, Tegan and Sara for sure. Those ladies are tough. Once we went bowling together and I thought they were going to knife me. I lost pretty badly so I didn't get hurt. Lucky.
Follow Jon Chattman on Twitter: www.twitter.com/thecheappop