How long have you two known each other?
Erez: Since summer after fourth grade.
Dan: We met at a rock band boot camp hosted by the Ann Arbor Music Center, which is the place where we now work. They held rock band day camps for a week for local high schools through rec and ed, and that’s how we met. We ended up going to Tappan Middle School for sixth grade and reconnected and started playing music together.
Erez: I used to beg Dan to come over and jam with me, and he’d be like, ‘I’m too cool.’
Dan: Yeah, I was too cool for him for a while.
Erez: He was too cool. I said, no, you’re good at guitar, c’mon. Let’s rock!…But now I’m the cool one.
Erez: Let the record show that…that is definitely true.
How old are you guys?
Both: Both 22.
Are you both in school right now?
Dan: I just finished.
Erez: I’ve got a semester left.
At U of M?
Dan: Both at U of M, yeah.
How did you come up with the name of your album [Interthestellars]?
Erez: That was Ben Factor’s idea. We laughed and went, ‘oh, that would be hilarious and stupid if we did that,’ but we decided it was hilarious and stupid in a good way.
Dan: We like the aesthetic of space, and it really worked out. I mean, I don’t think the artwork was entirely influenced by the name Interthestellars. That’s the image that the songs gave us anyway.
Erez: And it just shows the sense of humor that we have as a band. We’re pretty much Tenacious D, so –
Dan: But stupider. [laughs]
Erez: But worse. Also, more crass.
You have a song “Jamie, I Want My Book Back” – did you ever get your book back?
Erez: Well, that song came out and I was in the car with my girlfriend and Jamie called me, and it was just a very funny moment. She said, ‘oh my god, do you want the book back?’ And I told her, no, you have to keep it, it’s funnier this way if you keep it. Let’s keep it intact. She was really gracious about it. She got a kick out of it, I think. She’s a sport, which I’m very grateful for.
What book was it?
Erez: That will remain a secret forever. I like the actual details about Ann Arbor we put in our album, like “Four Quarter Pool” is just all about places in Ann Arbor where we grew up hanging out … “Jamie, I Want My Book Back” has actual Michigan local references… and I really like having the album be very geographically Ann Arbor.
It feels very “Ann Arbor?”
Erez: Yeah, I like Ann Arbor. [both laugh]
Dan: We’re both very Ann Arbor. We grew up here, we were born here and we never left.