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The Shins

A classic guitar pop group almost nine years in the making, Albuquerque, New Mexico's the Shins began in 1997 as the side project of singer/songwriter and guitarist James Mercer's primary band, Flake. Mercer formed Flake in 1992 with drummer Jesse Sandoval, keyboardist Marty Crandall, and bassist Neal Langford; they eventually changed their name to Flake Music, releasing several singles, a well-received album, When You Land Here, It's Time to Return, and touring with friends like Modest Mouse and Califone.

Soon after the release of When You Land Here, Mercer and Sandoval formed the Shins as a change of pace, playing as a duo with Cibo Matto and the American Analog Set. With Mercer as the Shins' primary songwriter, the group developed a more focused, crafted sound than Flake Music's charming, if somewhat rambling, collaborative style. Crandall, as well as Scared of Chaka's Dave Hernandez and Ron Skrasek, filled out the Shins' lineup; however, Hernandez and Skrasek left after a short while, due to the success of their main project. By 1999, Flake Music essentially disbanded and Langford also joined the Shins.

With a couple of 7"s on Omnibus -- 1998's "Nature Bears a Vacuum" and 2000's "When I Goose-Step" -- under their belts, the Shins embarked on a tour with Modest Mouse. Sub Pop's Jonathan Poneman caught the San Francisco date of the tour and asked the Shins to contribute a single to the label's Single of the Month Club, which eventually became an offer to release their 2001 single "New Slang" and their debut album, Oh, Inverted World. The group spent the rest of the year touring with acts such as Preston School of Industry and Red House Painters. The release of the singles "Know Yr Onion!" and "The Past and the Pending" kept the Shins' success going into 2002, cementing Oh, Inverted World as one of the definitive indie rock albums of the early 2000s and the band as one of the style's definitive artists.

By the time the band recorded their second album, Chutes Too Narrow, Langford was replaced on bass by Dave Hernandez (ex-Scared of Chaka). The album appeared in fall 2003, their first to reach the Billboard charts. The Shins' profile increased drastically the next year when actor Zach Braff included several of their songs in his 2004 movie Garden State with one of the main characters going so far as to proclaim that "New Slang" would "change your life." Its follow-up, Wincing the Night Away, appeared in January 2007 and sold over a staggering 100,000 copies in its first week. The Shins had never before hit higher than number 86 on the Billboard charts, but the album's sales snagged the guys a debut spot of number two. (This was also a record for Sub Pop itself, as the label had only previously peaked at number 79 with the Afghan Whigs' 1996 album Black Love.) It was also nominated for a Grammy for Best Alternative Album.

In 2008, the band announced that their contract with Sub Pop was up, and that their next album would be released through Mercer's own Aural Apothecary label. The resulting Port of Morrow featured an all new backing band, including fellow songwriters Jessica Dobson and Richard Swift, Modest Mouse drummer Joe Plummer, and Yuuki Matthews from the Crystal Skulls. It arrived in March 2012, received generally positive reviews, and promptly reached number three on the Billboard charts. ~ Heather Phares, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: So Says I (Single)

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Track List: Goodbye Girl (CD Single)

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Track List: Live At The Austin City Limits Music Festival 2006

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Track List: No Way Down / Fall Of '82 (Swift Sessions) (Single)

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Track List: Simple Song (Single)

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Track List: So Now What (Single)

Comments

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1 Kiss your left hand
2 Say your crushes name
3 Say your name
4 Pick a day of the week
5 Post this on 15 other songs and your crush will ask you out on the day you picked
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i love the shins k
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The depth of prose, the meandering melodies, possibly the best lyricists in 60 years. No other group has had this kind of cultural influence since Elvis.
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jindo61
Have been hearing The Shins all my life
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Christ, who are these retards that do all of this spamming?
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S
Sh
Shi
Shin
Shins
Shin
Shi
Sh
S
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fox.pottermo r e
No, We Will Become Silhouettes is originally by The Postal Service!! The Shins did the cover!
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Postal Service covered We Will Become Silhouettes, it is originally by the Shins
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Erica, the Shins covered that song on the Postal Service EP. That's also where you'll find the Iron & Wine cover of Such Great Heights.
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Pandora, for the Shins' song 'We Will Become Silhouettes, ' you have the album artwork for the Postal Services' 'Such Great Heights EP.'
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Pandora, 'We Will Become Silhouettes' is by THE POSTAL SERVICE, not The Shins!
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Really nice band! ❤❤❤
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Almost 9 years in the making? Not quite accurate. Update your bios, Pandora.
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New Slang: FTT; BIG PROBLEM
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The Shins are so much fun! Whenever I'm upset or blue and I feel like shifting gears I always pop them on. It really helps!
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The Shins hold a place in my heart few other bands do
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seludes
Nice, but they REALLY sound a lot like so many other bands from the uncharted 80's...
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Kind of hate to say it, but I think the Shins might be Burque's biggest contemporary music band.
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Why are these guys not superstars. Brilliant song writing and beautiful arrangements .
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Beauty, sweet beauty
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jfp15
If James Mercer f*rted into a microphone it probably would make mad decent music. Nothing to great but still some solid tunes. Dudes an alternative rock OG
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I don't want to listen to Kenny Chesney---Pa n d o r a let me in-------I want Shins
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The awsome
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landong1023
I love them
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I love the shins
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I love every single song by The Shins.
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The shins make me tired
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I'm so glad I have awesome kids that turned me on to this. The Shins are very good.
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broke my laptop... i hit the like button to hard.
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Does James Mercer even know how to make a bad song?
Everything he does is music magic!!
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I feel like New Slang was/should'v e been on the show Skins (the UK version). It just has that vibe
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Love their song New Slang!
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What a great band to come back to wonderful
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Like it
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The Shins
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this on 10 other songs
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F**k this bullshit chain messages. The Shins otoh are good.
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Bass is good
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Follow me if you love it like I dooo!! \(^-^)/
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I love this group
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There music just gets you in such a good mood, Beautiful
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����
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Quality
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"I'm looking in on the good life I may be doomed never to find." Great song.
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I love these guys more than the world knows even though i seriously don't understand their lyrics sometimes!
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Love New Slang <3<3<3
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birdygirl73
Such a cute song! ��
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they got it goin' on..
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It all can't be blown away...
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wedwyer3694
Suck balls
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