The Halo Benders

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The Halo Benders
Co-lead singer, Calvin Johnson
Co-lead singer, Calvin Johnson
Background information
OriginBoise, Idaho and Olympia, Washington, U.S.
Years active1994–2001, 2007, 2010
Associated acts
Past membersDoug Martsch
Calvin Johnson
Ralf Youtz
Wayne Flower
Steve Fisk

The Halo Benders was a band formed in 1994 as a side project by Calvin Johnson of Beat Happening and Doug Martsch of Built to Spill.[1] They released their first album, God Don't Make No Junk, in 1994. They followed up in 1996 with Don't Tell Me Now and in 1998 with The Rebels Not In.

Following a hiatus through the early 2000s, the Halo Benders reformed in March 2007 for a pair of shows at the Visual Arts Collective in Boise, Idaho. The band featured Doug Martsch, Ralf Youtz, Calvin Johnson, Brett Netson, and Stephen Gere. November 2010, a reformed version with both Doug and Calvin appeared for a benefit for Friends of Mia, related to Mia Zapata the late singer for The Gits at the Capitol Theater in Olympia, WA.

All three of the band's albums were released on Johnson's Olympia record label, K Records.


The Halo Benders' music is characterized by untraditional sounds, movements, and song structures. The vocals of the baritone Johnson and the higher-pitched Martsch have been described as highly contrasting - "each seems to inhabit a completely different song."[2] Johnson has said that the two write lyrics for songs largely independently.[citation needed]

Featured on Real Stories of the Highway Patrol[]

While the band was touring Utah in the 90's, they were pulled over by police officers filming for the reality series Real Stories of the Highway Patrol.[3]



Studio albums[]

Singles & EPs[]


  1. ^ "K Records page". 2021-05-06.
  2. ^ "188. Halo Benders "Virginia Reel Around the Fountain" [K; 1998]". The Top 200 Tracks of the 1990s. August 30, 2010.
  3. ^ Josiah Hughes (2016-08-26). "Watch Calvin Johnson and Doug Martsch Get Handcuffed for Weed in This Surreal '90s Clip". Exclaim!. Retrieved 2021-05-06.

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