Mates of State's Kori Gardner and Jason Hammel leave little to the imagination: They use the intimate details of their relationship as fodder for songwriting, and once filmed a video wearing only their underwear. Since moving from Lawrence, Kansas, to San Francisco, they've released four full-length albums and two EPs — and gotten married in 2001. The offbeat pop duo lives by the motto "Play anywhere, anytime," and, along with their daughter, have toured North America and Europe relentlessly since the release of their first album, 2000's My Solo Project. Their live shows remain their forte, with feel-good vocal harmonies accompanied mainly by an electric keyboard (Gardner) and drums (Hammel).
In March, the duo released its fourth full-length album, Bring It Back, and although the overall vibe remains reminiscent of past releases, the lyrics reveal deeper emotions and issues. Full of punk-informed jams and quirky ballads, Bring It Back is the band's most diverse and personal album yet.