We Are Scientists is a New York City-based rock band that formed in Berkeley, California, in 2000. It consists of guitarist and vocalist Keith Murray and bass guitarist Chris Cain.
The band’s breakthrough success came with their first studio album, With Love and Squalor, which sold 100,000 copies in the first six months. Their second album, Brain Thrust Mastery, charted at number 11 in the UK album chart, with two top-40 singles, “After Hours” and “Chick Lit”. Album three, Barbara, was released in June 2010. Their fourth album, TV en Français, was released on March 3, 2014, and returned them to the UK top-40. Their fifth album Helter Seltzer was released on April 22, 2016.
They have also starred in their own series of comedic television shorts, Steve Wants His Money, made for MTV UK in 2009.
Keith and Chris met in 1997 at Pomona College, in Claremont, CA, but initially enjoyed a friendship based on attending stand-up comedy. In early 2000, after graduating and moving to Berkeley, CA, they hatched the idea for the band. Their roommate and fellow Pomona College alum Scott Lamb was a co-founder, and the original guitarist for the band. Keith was on drums, though he also sang roughly half the songs. Keith and Chris moved back to the L.A. area in late 2000 (without Scott) and recruited drummer Michael Tapper. In 1999 the members moved to Berkeley, California for a short period of time, becoming We Are Scientists full-time, a name which the band have stated a number of origins for, most notably the song “We are Scientists!” from the pivotal ’90s band Cap’n Jazz. They have also given the following story: they rented a truck from U-Haul. When they returned it, the inspector, after looking them up and down and assessing their wardrobe, asked if they were scientists.
The band moved to Brooklyn, New York in 2001 and began recording their debut album on November 10, 2001. The band finished recording in January 2002, completing 12 tracks – two of which credit former member Scott Lamb. The album’s title was announced on March 14, 2002 on the band’s official website as Safety, Fun, and Learning (In That Order) for release in April 2002 through the band’s own label, Devious Semantics.
On February 1, 2018, the band teased new music with the release date of February 5. This was the release of the music video for their single “One In One Out”. They also announced a new album titled Megaplex, which was released April 27, 2018.