Department of Eagles began in 2001, when Daniel Rossen and Fred Nicolaus were randomly assigned to live together by New York University. During their academically lax spring semester, they made an "album" of beat-type songs best described as "What DJ Shadow's retarded little brother would sound like." Nevertheless, a small record company in California heard the CDR and wanted to release a couple of 7" singles. Around that time, a friend's father, Jeff Saltzman, invited the group to record in his new studio. Fred and Dan used the opportunity to record the bulk of their debut album, which featured a blend of the beat-type stuff and more straightforward songwriting. It was released in 2003 and did fine, selling a modest number of copies and garnering some decent press.
In 2004, the group graduated from colleg...
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