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Secret Cities

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Fargo ND, United States (2002 – present)

Secret Cities hail from Fargo, North Dakota and formed in 2002. MJ Parker and Charlie Gokey were barely 15 when they met at band camp, but a shared love of and scads of secret, unheard songs between them drew the pair together. They passed cassettes back and forth across the tundra of their home state, each manipulating and adding to the other’s work via 4-track. Slowly they built up a catalog of sound collage and darkly romantic pop.

Following the addition of Alex Abnos (aka Kansas City’s Tut Tut) on drums and a whirlwind tour of Midwest, the three went back to the drawing board. Over the next four years, they tore down and rebuilt their sound, sometimes woodshedding in an actual wooden shed on the prairie. Eventually, Secret Cities emerged with a cocktail of Spector-esque doe-eyed romanticism, electronic flourishes indebted to minimalist composers like Terry Riley, the noisy, art damaged sensibilities of late psych groups like The United States of America.

Respected blog Stereogum tipped the band as one to watch in 2010 noting that the band’s “twisting kaleidoscope of crystalline psychedelia, chirpy folk, dark baroque pop, and bare emotions” brought to mind “The Antlers in a blender” or a “chillier Grizzly Bear brought up on The Unites States of America”.

Their debut album Pink Graffiti was released on July 20, 2010 via Western Vinyl. Their latest album Strange Hearts was released on March 20, 2011.

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