A fierce and edgy alt-country band from Columbus, Ohio, Two Cow Garage takes the twangy melodies of vintage country music and fuses them with a muscular, amped-up attack that recalls Nirvana or Dinosaur Jr. as much as the Jayhawks or Blue Rodeo. Two Cow Garage was formed in the fall of 2001 by guitarist and singer Micah Schnabel, who was born and raised in the rural Midwestern community of Bucyrus, Ohio. Weaned on vintage country, Schnabel didn't care much for the mainstream rock that dominated radio, preferring harder and edgier sounds. At 18, he moved to the relatively big city of Columbus and started playing with drummer Dustin Harigle. Chris Flint, a guitarist and lawyer who used to manage the Lilybandits, saw an early version of Two Cow Garage and was struck by their passionate energy and Schnabel's songs; he signed on as the band's manager and part-time guitarist, and with the addition of bassist Shane Sweeney, the group's lineup was complete.
In the fall of 2002, Two Cow Garage released their first album, Please Turn the Gas Back On, through Shelterhouse Records; the band supported the disc with a relentless tour schedule that put 332,000 miles on their van's odometer over the course of two years. 2004 saw the release of their second album, The Wall Against Our Backs, which received rave reviews from critics while the band kept up their punishing tour schedule, which was captured on video by fan and filmmaker John Boston in his documentary The Long Way Around: One Badass Year with Two Cow Garage. Two Cow Garage's third album, aptly titled III, was released in April 2007.
In 2008, Two Cow Garage dropped their fourth album, Speaking in Cursive, which was released in tandem by Shelterhouse and Suburban Home. By this time, Dustin Harigle and Chris Flint had left the group, and drummer Cody Smith and keyboardist Andy Schell joined the lineup as Two Cow Garage maintained their busy touring schedule. Suburban Home brought out another Two Cow Garage album, Sweet Saint Me, in 2010. The following year, Cody Smith and Andy Schell departed the band, and David Murphy signed on as the group's new drummer. After launching a successful crowd-funding campaign, the band released The Death of the Self Preservation Society through Last Chance Records in 2013. In 2015, Two Cow Garage became a quartet again when Todd Farrell, Jr. became their new guitarist. The following year, the band returned with another new project, 2016's Brand New Flag. ~ Mark Deming