Harlem, Tiger Thrust, Sir Name & The Janes

If the Beach Boys and Nirvana knocked up the Pipettes, the resulting lovechild would be Harlem.

Bubblegum-tainted choruses, irreverent charm and a frenetic pace drive their first album for Matador Records, Hippies. (The Austin trio self-released the 2008 EP, Free Drugs.) There's also a gritty insouciance and psych leaning that calls to mind the Black Lips—only improved. Really, "Gay Human Bones" and "Friendly Ghost" are pretty much garage-rock crack.

The best part, though, is that Harlem comes off like they're having too much damn fun to care about impressing you. And that's what sets them apart from the rash of lo-fi, gimmicky bands blowing up the blogosphere as of late. You might love it and you might hate it—but if you're looking for dirty, good fun, Harlem may be your new favorite band.


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