9. You listen to the album. It is full of quick, simple and infectious pop songs. The recording is bare and clean. No gimmicks. The songs are stripped to the bone, hiding nothing, fooling no one. Guitars jangle, cymbals crash, voices yelp and howl. Harlem isn’t trying too hard-- not due to lack of ambition, but because they are simply interested in writing great songs while having fun doing it, relying on talent and energy.
10. It’s great.
11. Really great.
12. You decide to go to the show.
13. While waiting for the show to begin (still thinking about that Pavement album!), you see the members of the band standing around, waiting. You don’t know what for, but you can’t help but think they look like normal guys.
14. You see lots of people walking around with Pabst Blue Ribbon. There is a long line towards the back of the store. Free beer.
15. Free beer!
16. FREE BEER!
17. Harlem starts playing, charging through their set at rapid-fire Ramones speed. The crowd is hooked; teens sway and bob in front of the stage; a mother dances with an infant in her arms; old rockers nod in approval. It is over in the blink of an eye.
18. You walk up to Michael Coomers, the co-vocalist/guitarist/drummer for Harlem, and tell him about reasons 1, 3, 4, 6, 7, 9/10, and 12.
19. He doesn’t think you’re crazy, but humors you and says that it must be fate that you ended up in Austin.
20. It is acceptable to drink beer just about anywhere at anytime.