The six-piece fuzzy alt-rock act shares their favorite spots for DIY action, merch-worthy bagels and the jukebox hits you wanna hear
BORAN + abilene
JONATHAN: This restaurant is in the same neighborhood as a bunch of other spots we go to. They’re killing it. We go there all the time. Just as Peter was saying… any time Sean* comes up here, it’s like a celebration, and since my girlfriend works for Boran—let the record show, we get treated amazingly. And we will gladly treat you for a dinner on Saturday night…
But typically, since we’re such a large band, it’s hard to get a table there. So we’ll go to the bar up the street, Abilene, like a block away.
We’ll drink at Abilene and then we’ll go to Boran and usually we eat until they close.
[+ On their photoshoot at Boran]
JOHAN: It was a great photoshoot. There’s one photo that we took that resembles the Last Supper. It was totally accidental. I wouldn’t say we’re a religious band at all…
JONATHAN: That photoshoot was approved by one of the owners and chefs, Kathy.
SEAN: Jonathan asked her, she’s the chef and owner, if we could take photos there, and she said yes. And on the day of the shoot… I walk up to her… she was in the kitchen, and she came out. I said, “Hey, thank you so much for letting us take the photos here.” And she said to me—looked me dead in the eye, and she said, “Boran is yours.” Then that was it. So, yeah. That’s our favorite restaurant, I think.
[*Sean has since moved to Brooklyn. But we imagine it’s still a celebration.]
THE BROOKLYN INN
SAHIL: This place has a few draws, one being that it is very conveniently located in the apex of where me and Peter live, and where my studio is, which is right down the street, so it is the closest bar to where I live and work. But besides that, it is—I’m gonna get this wrong—but I think that it’s not the oldest bar in Brooklyn, but there has been a bar at this location longer than anywhere else in Brooklyn, and I think that means that there’s been a bar in this room for over 200 years or something like that. But all of the decor in here is preserved from what it was back in the day… It’s just like classic, vintage stuff.
There are also rumors that this place is haunted—that apparently there’s a building inspector from the 18th century who will come in here late at night. He wears a trench coat and has a big hat. I’ve never seen in myself; I’ve heard stories. But they play great music in here, also. That’s definitely a fact.
SEAN: The jukebox has a wild… well, I don’t know. What’s wild anymore? It’s a cool selection of music… Bob Dylan, some Pixies, stuff like that…
SAHIL: Radiohead… stuff that other bars would be too stuck up to actually play. They just play the stuff you wanna hear in here, and it’s really nice.
SEAN: There’s a good selection of Wilco, too. It’s like, deep, older Wilco stuff… stuff that we like.
SAHIL: Sitting at this particular spot, at this particular time of day, is peak Brooklyn in my mind. Late afternoon, sun’s comin’ in… I feel like it’s hard to find a bar in Brooklyn that’s this size, and this peaceful, and has windows and good music.
PETER: Sahil will refer to this place as his office, and we’ll have office hours here.
SAHIL: I conduct all my business here.
PETER: We conduct meetings and celebrations.
SAHIL: The official signing with the label that released the first album was at it this very table, right here.
148 Hoyt St, (718) 522-2525, The Brooklyn Inn on Facebook
COURT STREET BAGELS
SEAN: I know tattoos aren’t part of the brand of the band, but I wanted I really wanted to get tattooed by this guy. And he worked at Smith Street Tattoo, which is in Carroll gardens. And then I like went to help Peter and Sahil moved in together in Boerum Hill, I visited them, and I set an appointment to get tattooed by this guy. And the morning of the appointment, Peter took me to this bagel place called Court Street Bagel. And at the time, I was really into lox…
Nowadays my my order is an everything bagel, toasted, with sun-dried tomato tofu cream cheese. It’s made in-house.
JONATHAN: Multiple members of Glom do not support tofu cream cheese.
PETER: My mom was visibly ashamed of me when I ordered tofu cream cheese.
SEAN: That’s unfortunate. But you know, to each their own. We don’t judge. Do as thy will as above so below…
I love that bagel place. I honestly mocked up a couple t-shirts. They were not approved by the rest of the band but they were Glom t-shirts that said Court Street Bagel on the back of the shirt.
181 Court St, (718) 624-3972
SAHIL: I work full-time as a freelance producer and mix engineer, so it started with me looking for a space where I could basically just record bands. It’s as simple as that, because at that point, I was like, there’s a lot of great music that my friends are making, and I wanted a space and the resources to be able to record them the way I wanted to, for cheap, and not deal with the restraints of a commercial studio.
So I kind of teamed up with my friend, Eli, who was also interested in making a space where he could record and make music, you know, in the kind of environment that was less stifling in a totally commercial way. But he kind of brought to the experience this idea of also having a performance space where bands could play lower-key shows, and kind of have a more intimate setting to try different things, or different arrangements, or just play for their friends—again, without the restraints of a venue that was just trying to make money.
So I guess in that sense, it’s sort of like… I mean, that is what the DIY aesthetic is, but it’s a little bit more than DIY, because we’re providing, you know, the resources and the gear and environment and the community for people to just try new things and be empowered to be making music, which sounds kind of hokey and precious… And it wasn’t like that specific of an idea. It just turned into that…. sort of ballooned into kind of a bigger thing, where like all sorts of different types of music, all different bands around Brooklyn—some that we know, some that we don’t know— have come to play at the space and appreciate it for what it is, which is kind of like a rare, small, intimate venue to try different things.
PETER: It’s kind of a crazy thing to be a part of. Because you just realize that the DIY scene really is just a group of people who just decided that it’s going to happen. Like, it’s not going to happen any other way, so we are going to make it happen.
SEAN: Make it happen for yourself, by yourself. You know, it’s very inspiring to be a part of this community… I mean, I firmly believe that there’s a movement going on, with all these like respective DIY scenes.
The Dodge community means a lot to me, personally… there’s a support system that we’re a part of, and you know, it’s a commercial studio, and then it’s also an art space, an event space. It’s gonna be something very special, you know, like people are gonna look back on it and say that it was something big.
SAHIL: Yeah, it’s turned into—at least for me, besides all the shows that we’ve been putting on—it is my office, and I’ve been very lucky to make a lot of amazing records there, and have my own space where I can record a full band. Like I can pull in a band off the street and make a record in two days now, for whatever I want to charge, which is like a really special, lucky thing to be able to do in New York, where real estate is expensive to rent and studio space is even more expensive. And just having enough square footage and the resources to be able to record at high-fidelity and do like creative, experimental music-making decisions… It’s a really special thing…
In a year and a half, we’ve probably done like… eight full-length records, 10 EPs and maybe like 50 shows? That seems about right.
JOHAN: It’s the only studio I’ve been in in New York, and I feel like I don’t need to ever go to another one. It’s got a great vibe. It all feels really good; it’s a great space.
JONATHAN: It’s a definite family vibe. More often than not, you’ll run into multiple bands while you’re there, people coming in and out… It’s really the epicenter of this Brooklyn musical community between all our friends.
JORDAN: I moved November 2018, so Dodge 112 and the whole community was my ticket and introduction to the city… It’s really special. The communal aspect, the family aspect, it’s just genuinely good people who connect there.
I’ve heard a lot of stories of just the DIY scene and ways it’s been affected… [how] DIY students have been like closing off… and it’s still, like, a very live, living thing.
THE GREEN-WOOD CEMETERY
PETER: Sahil and I often have really nice afternoons taking a stroll down Fifth Ave. and we end up at Greenwood Cemetery… We stop at the Two Boots along the way for a couple often vegan slices and perhaps a beer.
It’s a really nice cemetery to spend time in… perhaps an eternity in.
500 25th St, green-wood.com
JOHAN: I’m from D.C., and when I come up here, the boys will take us to Zaytoon and it’s a great experience. The babaganoush is very delightful…
I just wouldn’t feel right if I didn’t mention Zaytoons.
594 Vanderbilt Ave, (718) 230-3200, zaytoons.com
Glom’s record Merit is out now!
[Interview has been edited and condensed.]
Feature image: Ben Curry