Noisy yet wistful electro-indie pop group Small Black started with a name and worked backward: a housemate of singer/multi-instrumentalist Josh Kolenik came up with the moniker on a cold Portland, OR night. The name stuck when he returned to Long Island, NY and began collaborating with Ryan Heyner, an area musician who had mutual friends with Kolenik. The pair holed up in Kolenik’s uncle’s attic to record songs with vintage keyboards and samplers, spending the winter of 2008-2009 recording as Uncle Matt made surfboards underneath them. Small Black released their self-titled five-song EP on the duo's own CassClub label in October 2009, and released the U.K. single "Despicable Dogs," as well as a video for that song featuring Uncle Matt, soon after. The band played several dates at that year’s CMJ Music Marathon, adding Juan Pieczanski and Jeff Curtin from Kolenik’s previous band, Slowlands, to fill out its live lineup. Small Black signed to Jagjaguwar Records, who reissued the band’s debut EP with two bonus tracks in 2010. That year, the band also released a split single with the likeminded Washed Out, with whom Small Black also went on tour. New Chain, the band's first full-length, boasted a slightly more polished sound and arrived in October 2010. ~ Heather PharesPortions of Content Provided by Rovi Corporation.
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