Gig Seeker Pro


Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | SELF

Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2012
Duo Alternative Pop




"PREMIERE: Har-di-Har - we will will you"

"...reminiscent of other elaborate songwriters like My Brightest Diamond, Dirty Projectors, and Superhuman Happiness (impressive company to say the least), Har-di-Har nevertheless succeed in forging their own distinctive sound—one that's simultaneously cerebral and evocative.

From the unassuming opening bars of "What if We Don't?" to the final, fading echoes of "A Love Movement," we will will you is a staggeringly complex album that's sandwiched between assertions of simplicity. It's a structure that speaks to a broader thesis of Har-di-Har's music: our most beautiful, elaborate creations stem from our most elemental desires. It's also one that makes this a record you'll want to explore over and over." - Will Shenton - THRDCOAST

"Har-di-Har return from a personal and musical separation"

Fans of Sylvan Esso should enjoy Har-di-Har's folk components and frantic beats.

Ever grow attached to a fledgling band, only to realize they've dropped off the face of the earth? In the two years since Andrea Swensson named them one of the "10 new Twin Cities bands to watch," I'd given up on more music from husband-and-wife duo Har-di-Har. Their skittish, harmony-soaked EP We Are | They Are remained in my personal rotation, though -- so when I opened my inbox to find new music from the band, I jumped to hear the file. Then I jumped to share it here.

Julie and Andrew Thoreen stepped back from the stage to rebuild their personal relationship, assembling their new album, we will will you, in the thick of conflict and reconciliation. In "I Will Go Slow," the Thoreens admit, "I don't know how to go slow." But like always, they recommit: "I'll stick on your side. I will go slow." They write, "we will will you hopes that if two people on the edge can bring it back, maybe more can too."

Theirs has been a tough personal rift but an enjoyable musical journey. A trombone choir and background vocals curl around the music's spare skeleton. Fans of Sylvan Esso should enjoy Har-di-Har's folk components and frantic beats.

we will will you comes out Sept. 29 with an Oct. 6 Icehouse release party. - 89.3 The Current

"[LISTEN] Har-di-Har - We Must Stand Up"

"Don't stay down," Julie Thoreen demands, on Har-di-Har's first new song in over two years. This single, "We Must Stand Up," rings true to the times, hailing a resistance and their upcoming debut full-length album, we will will you.

Julie, together with musical and life partner Andrew Thoreen, addresses the threats to their relationship and how they deal with them. "We move together," they sing, as each contributes an eclectic series of sounds to the composition, from trombone to midi samples.

I love these two and their music because they blur lines in so many ways: sharing a drum set in live performances, mixing art and music, and inserting politically vague statements into their work. But here, in a moment of defiance, they define themselves clearly to one another - Indie Shuffle

"Album review"

"What Har-di-Har has created is an impressionistic, emotions-laid-bare illustration of the mental wrestling about coming back together. The lyrics and vocals move between cautious optimism and doubt. In “It Held Me,” Julie sings: “Once/you held me/made me greater than what I thought and/you don’t know it.” In “We Must Stand Up,” Andrew sings: “My friend/our knuckles/are bound together.”

You can let the music wash over you or can lean into it, focusing on the fancifully fussy assembly of the songs. The textures of horns, keyboards and bass guitar supporting close harmonies at times recalls Stereolab’s Dots and Loops. The foundation of ticking percussion—looping, repeating, building and disintegrating—artfully captures the occasional disorientation of doubt. Songs break down into two or three parts and then build back up into many layers. There’s a lot going on upon close inspection.

Do Har-di-Har make it? Are these hymns to healing or a parting psalm?

The answer may lie in the finale, “A Love Movement,” which sounds like a Brian Wilson outtake, capturing the beautiful longing of “Surf’s Up.” Spare tinkling piano, washes of horns and distortion; their soaring vocals building and swirling together: “This is what we’ve longed for in friendship.”

Har-di-Har came back together and, in sharing their personal conflict, created a concise and masterfully crafted record with we will will you—one that sets the bar high for their future releases." - Michael Roeder - Little Village Magazine

"Har-di-Har "We Must Stand Up" (incredibly thoughtful)"

Art-pop duo Har-Di-Har has a new single called “We Must Stand Up”, and it is as thoughtful as it is catchy. Julie Thoreen (voice, keyboards, midi sampling) and Andrew Thoreen (voice, guitar, bass, trombone, drums) have created something very unique, music that actually has substance and a rich meaning. A lot of the music around us today is just pumped out quickly for hits and money, but this Saint Paul, MN based band is taking a different route, and the effort shows.

This chorus rings out as both Julie and Andrew sing it together. This is very applicable to the times we are living in, considering social injustices and the like. Not only is this song incredibly thoughtful, it is beautifully constructed and pleasing to the musical palate. - Impose Magazine

"Har-di-Har perform in technicolor ritual for this week's top 5 MN Music Videos"

The record release show Friday at Icehouse for We Will Will You was a big night for Har-di-Har. The Minneapolis art-pop duo expanded into a seven-piece, complete with trumpets and dance accompaniment. The new video for album single “The Wonder” recreates some of that human chaos with a gaggle of bodies grasping at each other ritualistically.

Directed by Shannon Brunette and featuring the dance company Kelvin Wailey, the video offers a trippy metaphor for human relationships. “Holding on to meaningful relationships in this ever-growing chaos feels like our only chance for real sanity,” says Har-di-Har’s Andrew Thoreen. “Yet just caring for our own personal chaos seems hysterically impossible, let alone that of another.” - Minneapolis City Pages

"PREMIER: Har-di-Har -- "It Held Me""

If you love complex yet undeniably fetching music, you’ll want to hear this.

The duo wrote their new album, we will will you, during a period of separation as a band and a couple. It’s a record that invites us into the process of re-commitment: the waiting, the to or not to, the thought of an end, a beginning. Throughout we will will you, two prominent characters, played by a trombone choir and the ethereal background vocals, call out consistently, forming the Greek chorus to this drama. - Earbuddy

"Back to the City video podcast: Har-Di-Har’s ‘We Will, Will You’ is a testament to intimacy achieved"

Julie and Andrew Thoreen joined Back to the City for a series of long-form conversations about a period during which both the band and marriage almost ended and their subsequent creation of an album about being "Endless/ Fearless/ Wed." They also discuss their debut full-length We Will, Will You (released this Friday) and their unique 10-piece live performance at Icehouse on Friday, October 6.

In our first conversation, Julie and Andrew share their thoughts on the tension that comes of maintaining a relationship in a world in which commitment and intimacy are neither taught nor trendy. - Minneapolis City Pages

"Bandcamp Weekly"

Creative indie bits from Har-di-Har ... really hard to pigeon-hole, but [a] pleasure to listen to... - Bandcamp

"Har-di-Har, We Scare Each Other"

"We Scare Each Other" caught my attention for its unique experimental approach. The intricate layers of instrumentation elicit comparisons to the likes of Broken Social Scene and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, a combination that's sure to win over experimental indie rock fans near and wide. - Indie Shuffle

"Har-di-Har and Sister Species unite for a night at Bryant-Lake Bowl"

Wife and husband Julie and Andrew Thoreen are known regionally for their musical dreamscapes -- and for occasionally playing a single drum set together. Fresh off a long break from performing, Har-di-Har began thinking about shows differently. - City Pages

"10 new Twin Cities bands to watch"

This charming husband and wife team of Julie and Andrew Thoreen kick up quite a maelstrom of sounds, accentuating their synth-and-drum pop with looped vocals running in counterpoint and a snare and bass drum rhythm they refer to as “co-dependent drumming.” They call their music freak-pop. I simply call it delightful. - The Current

"Those Weird Mysteries Slip In"

The husband and wife duo of Andrew and Julie Thoreen make you feel as if you're getting away from everything and still rushing right into another swarm of something that's going to be just as dicey. There are messes in the garden and there are possibly rabbits without heads that are going to be found on your doorstep. There are weird mysteries slipping here and there, hidden in the footsteps. They seem to like the melodies. - Sean Moeller, Daytrotter - Daytrotter.com

"Best of Minneapolis: 2014"

[When seeing Har-di-Har perform live] The words that came out of my mouth were things like "fantastic" and "brilliant" and "operatic" and "what the f#$%." Both singers and musicians, these two think beyond what is possible not only with two people, but within the realm of the average indie song...I do not know any band in which two people share a drumset between them, and it makes the music better instead of worse. Rhythm, pitch, tone, and musicality come like instinct to this pair. - The Aural Premonition

"Hundred Waters @ 7th Street Entry"

A very warm and sticky night in Minneapolis gave way to some awesome music at the 7th Street Entry, beginning with Har-di-Har, a local duo that does a tremendous job of blending dreamy ambience with danceable pop. The husband/wife duo not only shared responsibility of percussion, using a single kit between the two, which looks to require some serious dexterity, but also the vocal assignments. Besides having nearly the same haircut, their vocal styles were also very similar, and when combined create some extraordinary harmonies. - Radio K

"Minnesota record releases this week"

Har-di-Har, an ethereal, experimental husband-and-wife duo originally hailing from Iowa, have danced their way into the Twin Cities music scene... They now present their ambitious new EP Hard Parent/Thick Child. Out now, the six-song EP showcases Andrew and Julie Thoreen’s enticing vocal harmonies and fluttering instrumentals. Not to mention their unconventional setup: One half of the band plays keyboard and the hands of the drum, while the other plays the guitar and the feet of the drum. - Local Current Blog

"80/35 FESTIVAL 2014 RECAP"

This husband-and-wife duo is perfect for one another and feed off of each others sound beautifully. They had one of my favorite sets. - QRO Magazine

"Album Review: Har-di-Har Hard Parent/Thick Child EP"

Hard Parent/Thick Child is an easy pick for top releases of 2013. I find its bright, tightly woven percussion and warm vocal harmonies a relief from the cooler and more melancholy weather to come. - Little Village Magazine

"Sound Check Album Review (12/11/13)"

effect is nothing short of delightful. Dreamy and happy, Har-di-Har’s sound is derivative of a more mainstream version of the Cocteau Twins, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that statement. - Des Moines City View

"Album Review: "Hard Parent/Thick Child""

Har-di-Har is what I like to call “winter music.” Cue Har-di-Har and your drink of choice. - Band Bombshell

"No Joke: Har-di-Har"

There are many unusual things about the married-couple musical duo Har-di-Har, including the way songs swerve, shift, collapse, explode, die, and rise again with little warning. - River Cities Reader

"Live Review: Mission Creek Festival 2013, Day 1"

While the group is a duo, each member pulled at least double duty instrument-wise to create a rather striking wall of sound. If Andrew Thoreen would find himself playing acoustic guitar or bass guitar and the ‘foot-drums’ (hi-hat, bass drum), his partner Julie would be immersed in playing the keyboard with one hand while using the other to fill in the striking percussion (Snares, rims, struck hi-hats). Add into this the fact that both members sang impeccably timed and arranged harmonies over their extended suites and you have one of the most technically proficient groups I’ve seen in ages. - The Milk Carton


Har-di-Har are a ridiculously talented couple (Julie and Andrew Thoreen) who make really solid, adventurous records. Their music is hard to describe, and I often wonder what they would say if asked what kind of music they make – “Cinematic orchestral indie-pop with choral vocals and great beats”? Suffice it to say that they are gifted arrangers who aren’t afraid to throw a few surprises into their songs, after lulling you into a dream-like state with their lushness.

Har-di-Har make sophisticated music that manages to sound organic and never forced. It’d be nice to see them tackle a full-length album soon, or maybe score a film. They’d be equally great at both. - Des Moines Music Coalition

"Two Gregs One Podcast Episode 10"

I was intrigued by the sound being different, there is definitely a novelty to their sound. - Punknews.org - Punknews.org

"Lincoln Calling 2014: Friday Coverage"

The instrumental arrangement of Twin Cities pop duo Har Di Har was among the most unconventional of the festival (outside of Gloom Balloon). Andrew and Julie Thoreen combined to play drums, bass and keyboard structurally arranged in pieces on the Yia Yia’s stage. The keys, snare, and hi hat surrounded Julie, while her partner was left with his bass and remaining pieces of drum kit. Julie sang like a vibrato-heavy Kate Nash while playing a bouncing chord progression on the keyboard with her right hand and tapped her hi-hat/snare combo with her left. Andrew hummed on a five-string bass guitar while stomping a kick drum. At one point, Julie abandoned the keyboard to wail on her side of the frankenkit, creating rolling tribal rhythms. Their coordination alone was impressive. - Hear Nebraska


we scare each other (SGL) - January 2015 

Hard Parent/Thick Child EP - December 2013

Feudal Kind EP - December 2012

Word(s) of Whim EP - August 2012 



Har-di-Har is Julie and Andrew Thoreen. Corn-belt raised and married young, this Minneapolis duo has made music together since 2012, but their sound is far from what you might expect. Though rooted in traditional song form, their first full-length record, we will will you, is strikingly abnormal in its execution. It listens as if you were watching an odd, impassioned dream-musical taking place between two people’s subconscious minds...all while they sit together, in real time, quietly at the table.

Written during a season of separation between the duo, both as a band and a couple, we will will you is a record that invites us into the process of re-commitment: the waiting, the to or not to, the thought of an end, a beginning (timely reflections, regardless of one’s stance towards marriage). “We must stand up, but you just stay down...we move together, don’t stay down,” stamp-out the vocals in “We Must Stand Up”--a reminder to all of us of our inevitable connectivity, despite our desires not to be.

While the candid honesty of the lyrics reminds one of earlier St. Vincent, the hyper-layered, heady arrangements recall a “Swing Lo Magellan” Dirty Projectors mixed with a “Dots and Loops” Stereolab. Tracks like, “It Held Me,” show off the collage-y result of the musical collaboration between the duo. Andrew’s background in jazz is evidenced in his use of modal harmonies, bi-tonality and polyrhythms. Julie’s vocal melody and intricate harmony lines do, as the lyrics of the above song state, “shrink to fit beneath the cracks,” of Andrew’s busy musical arrangements, but once there, they expand and give the song solid foundation.

Throughout we will will you, two prominent characters, played by a trombone choir and the ethereal background vocals, call out consistently, forming the Greek chorus to this drama. They are the voices of honesty that propel us forward. Their interaction with the main lines are pure and beautiful, while at times dissonant and disjunct, imitating the way our minds endlessly waver for-or-against these anchors throughout the day. 

The album artwork is by Minneapolis artist, Matthew Pariseau (@adpariseau). The dense, juxtaposed pieces of each collage (as well, the music) embrace each other, as if they couldn’t make sense unless a part of the whole. Our eyes find rest in the sand and azure rectangle in the middle, representing, similarly, the two’s commitment amid the chaos.

Bands we've supported:

  • Hundred Waters 
  • Maps & Atlases
  • Esme Patterson
  • PHOX 
  • Thao & the Get Down Stay Down 
  • Avi Buffalo  
  • Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin
  • Happy Hollows  
  • Sally Ford & the Sound Outside 
  • the Soil & the Sun 
  • The River Monks 
  • We Are the Willows


  • All Senses Festival (September 2017) 
  • Mile of Music Festival (August 2017) 
  • Mile of Music Festival (August 2015)
  • 80/35, Des Moines, IA (June 2014)
  • CMJ Music Marathon, NYC, NY (October 2013)
  • Mission Creek Music Festival, Iowa City, IA (April 2013)
  • Midwest Music Fest, Winona, MN (April 2014, 2013) 
  • Lincoln Calling, Lincoln, NE (October 2014)
  • The Bubble Music Festival, Madison WI (October 2014) 
  • Shoot the Chutes, Des Moines, IA (August 2013)
  • College Hill Music Festival, Cedar Falls, IA (May 2014, 2013)
  • Little Big Fest, Des Moines, IA (2012)
  • Cedar Valley Pridefest, Waterloo, IA (2012)
BLOG/MEDIA highlights (see press):
  • bandcamp weekly 
  • 89.3 the Current
  • Indie shuffle 
  • Earbuddy
  • impose 
  • daytrotter
  • yvynyl 
  • Niche Music 
  • Independent Clauses
  • le choix 
  • indierockcafe
  • BIRP!  PLaylist December 2012 
  • PunkNews.org
  • Music is Art 
  • Local Current Blog (Minneapolis)
  • Salvajenada 
  • Play B-sides 
  • Radio K 
  • Hear Nebraska 

Band Members