Listeners will agree; both “Rearrange Beds” and even more so, the “Not Really Scared” EP sound as if they were recorded with a full four- or five-piece lineup, even though Cox and Cooper decided to forego session musicians during recording.

Both say they’ve been approached by other musicians “"strangers as well as friends — looking to join the lineup.

“We’re always like, “ËœUh, no'” Cox said. “We’re really enjoying the simplicity and the dynamic of just the two of us.”

“When there’s more people, there’s more people to please and it’s harder to make decisions” Cooper added. “I think we were just really happy just playing music together and keeping it as simple as possible.”

For all its charms, though, the minimalist lineup has made it difficult for An Horse to find its niche in the Australian music scene, both members say.

“It’s such a small industry (in Australia) so small that a band like me and Damon … there’s no place for us to fit, really, because it’s like, “ËœWhat do you mean there’s only two of them, and one’s a girl and one’s a boy? I don’t really understand'” Cooper said. “In the States, we’re kind of welcomed with open arms.”

For that reason — and also, largely due to the monetary and physical costs of flying across a minimum 15-hour time difference — the pair said they will make the U.S. and Canada their base for much of 2009.

“With the States, you can stay on the road a lot longer because there’s so many more cities to play” Cox explained. “[In Australia], there’s only like four or five major cities that you can play and then you’re done, pretty much. You always have to still maintain a day job … because you just can’t stay on the road for very long and because the market’s so small.”

It’s possible that Cooper and Cox were able to abide their day jobs — even the ones that involved cleaning toilets — because they always believed they were merely paying their dues in pursuit of their true passion.

“It’s funny, because we always thought it would become something, and we always felt positive about it, and we kind of fantasized about it becoming something a lot bigger than it was” Cox said.

That self-aggrandizing approach seems to be paying off. At the very least, their schedule now is a far cry from passing the time chatting about records and planning for imaginary shows.

“Sometimes when I think about all that crazy stuff that we did … I don’t know whether that was us being crazy and just spending way too much time in a record store together” Cooper said. “That’s what I used to put it down to. I’d be like, oh, well, Damon and I are losing our minds down here. But it actually kind of just happened that way. I guess we had no expectations and the ball started rolling. … It just took us all by surprise.”

“We’re finally at a point now where we actually can call ourselves musicians” Cox said, still sounding incredulous at the notion. “Like, when people say “ËœWhat do you do?’ then we can finally say that we’re musicians. Usually we’re working day jobs and not entirely happy with that, so it’s great to finally be in a position where we can 100 percent focus on making music and touring. We’re really grateful.”

Day jobs or not, the pair say they can’t imagine themselves doing anything else — even if real touring is a lot better than pretend touring.

“If I didn’t have music, I’d be a very unhappy person, I think” Cox said. “I’ve never really had a plan B. I’ve always wanted to be in a band, tour and make music.”

“If I wasn’t playing in a band, I’d be desperately unhappy, trying to play in a band” Cooper agreed. “I don’t know what I’d be doing. I’d probably be working in a record store.”

An Horse tour dates:

Mar 3‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ 7th Street Entry ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Minneapolis, Minnesota
Mar 4‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ High Noon Saloon ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Madison, Wisconsin
Mar 5‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Small Planet ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ East Lansing, Michigan
Mar 7 ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ The Green Room ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Montreal, Quebec
Mar 9 ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ The Montreal House ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Peterborough, Ontario
Mar 10 ‚ ‚  ‚ Casbah Lounge ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Hamilton, Ontario
Mar 11 ‚ ‚  ‚ London Music Club ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ London, Ontario
Mar 12 ‚ ‚  ‚ University of Guelph ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Guelph, Ontario
Mar 13 ‚ ‚  ‚ Canadian Music Week ~ Tranzac ‚ ‚  ‚ Toronto, Ontario
Mar 15 ‚ ‚  ‚ The Abbey ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Chicago, Illinois
Mar 16 ‚ ‚  ‚ Mad Hatter ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Covington, Kentucky
Mar 18 ‚ ‚  ‚ SXSW ~ Maggie Mae’s ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Austin, Texas
Mar 19 ‚ ‚  ‚ SXSW ~ Friends on 6th Street ‚ ‚  ‚ Austin, Texas
Mar 20 ‚ ‚  ‚ SXSW ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Austin, Texas
Mar 21 ‚ ‚  ‚ SXSW ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Austin, Texas
Mar 24 ‚ ‚  ‚ Echoplex‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Los Angeles, California*
Mar 25 ‚ ‚  ‚ Hotel Utah‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ San Francisco, California*
Mar 26 ‚ ‚  ‚ Lola’s‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Portland, Oregon*
Mar 27 ‚ ‚  ‚ The Vera Project‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Seattle, Washington*
Apr 9 ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ The End‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Nashville, Tennessee**
Apr 10 ‚ ‚  ‚ Masqerade‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Atlanta, Georgia**
Apr 11 ‚ ‚  ‚ Back Booth‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Orlando, Florida**
Apr 12 ‚ ‚  ‚ Jack Rabbits‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Jacksonville, Florida**
Apr 13 ‚ ‚  ‚ Local 506‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Chapel Hill, North Carolina**
Apr 14 ‚ ‚  ‚ DC9‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Washington DC, Washington DC**
Apr 17 ‚ ‚  ‚ The Space‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Hamden, Connecticut**
Apr 18 ‚ ‚  ‚ The Mercury Lounge‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ New York, New York**
Apr 18 ‚ ‚  ‚ The Mercury Lounge ~ late show ‚ ‚  ‚ New York, New York**
Apr 19 ‚ ‚  ‚ The Polish Club ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚  ‚ ‚  ‚ Poughkeepsie, New York**
Apr 20 ‚ ‚  ‚ Middle East‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Boston, Massachusetts**
Apr 22 ‚ ‚  ‚ Rubbles‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Mt Pleasant, Michigan**
Apr 24 ‚ ‚  ‚ Mojos‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Columbia, Missouri**
Apr 25 ‚ ‚  ‚ Record Bar‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ ‚ ‚  ‚ Kansas City, Missouri**

* w/ Wintersleep
** w/ Appleseed Cast

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About The Author

Elizabeth Raftery is senior editor of Blast. Follow her on Twitter.

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