The Mermaids are Hillel Arnold (guitar, bass, vocals) and Josh Gardner (guitar, harmonica, vocals). Since they began playing together in 2004, they have released three records and performed in New York, Boston, Toronto, and Washington, DC at venues including the Living Room, Southpaw, the Piston, Hank’s Saloon, the Coney Island History Project, and the Velvet Lounge. They have also received college radio play and appeared in the 2005 independent film Gonzo Music Diaries.
Steeped in the darker currents of folk and country music but bursting with the raw immediacy of underground rock and roll, their recordings and live shows have earned comparisons to Neil Young, Nick Drake, and the Velvet Underground.
The Mermaids released their self-titled EP in 2005. Recorded in Brooklyn with friend and producer Chris Brown (Bourbon Tabernacle Choir, Citizens’ Band, Open Hearts Society), it featured contributions from Tony Scherr, Jason Mercer, Carolyn Mark, and Melwood Cutlery. They followed up in 2010 with their first full-length LP, On Wolfe Island, which featured Anton Fier (The Feelies), Kate Fenner, Jason Whiteman (Apostle of Hustle), the Abrams Brothers, and many others.
In 2016, The Mermaids released their second full-length record, Amphetamines & Flowers. In contrast to the full sound and many contributors that characterized previous records, this album features a more stripped-down production, performed entirely by Hillel, Josh, Chris Brown (keyboards), Cam Giroux (drums), and Eli Abrams (bass).