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Horzman describes himself as an introvert, someone who will sit in a van before a show to get a moment of solitude, even if it means freezing his ass. “When you have that kind of personality, it’s really easy to find time to read,” she notes. “If you don’t stay inspired by other people and just rely on the crap in your head, you’re going to end up because you only have so much experience.”

At heart, he’s a scrap collector, and in Quarry, he carefully weaves together scenes from his family’s history, inspired by cartoonist Linda Barry’s graphic novel. Hard, a perversely violent tale of girlhood populated by heartwarming and gritty characters. “They’ve got scoliosis from the constant fall of misery,” Hartzman sings tenderly. “The flat parts of their staffs cut their heads from kneeling.”

As the sun begins to set, we exit the park and make our way through the odd combination of bespoke suits, cheerless carriage horses and M&M shop tourists that make up midtown Manhattan. The survey is reminiscent of the HBO show As with John Wilson, which constructs quirky, funny stories from everyday life like scaffolding and battery throwing. “Being sensitive to those things makes life more wonderful,” she says. “You’re capturing a moment that might not be appreciated if someone didn’t slow down their brain and notice.”

The mix of humor and sadness is what Hartzman loves about country music, too. “It’s impossible to avoid pop country radio in the South, and for a long time I thought that was the whole country,” he says. “But when I found Lucinda Williams and Outlaw Country, a whole world of songs opened up.” The rat saw God Storytellers of the country, such as Tom T. Hall, Loudon Wainwright III, and Richard Buckner. Speaking about Buckner, he says: “He’s a master at putting two words together in a nonsensical way, but then you think about it for a second and realize it’s perfect. It’s a magical power I want to have.”


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