Kori Gardner (keyboard/vocals) and Jason Hammel (drums/vocals) were both playing guitar and singing in the Kansas music metropolis of Lawrence before forming the Mates of State in 1997. With their dual vocal harmonies and minimalist pop appeal, Omnibus Records released Mates of State's first EP as a split with Fighter D in 1999. Upon a relocation to San Francisco, the duo's second EP, It's the Law/Invitation Inn, and a debut studio effort, My Solo Project, followed in 2000. Tours of the Midwest followed into the next year and creative ideas continued to swirl. Hammel and Gardner, who were married in early 2001, inked themselves a deal with Polyvinyl prior to recording a follow-up. Summer days were spent playing shows with Superdrag, the Anniversary, and Beulah while writing songs on the road. Those sessions led to the second album, Our ...
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