Modest Mouse Photographs by John Clark
EW Staff
June 18, 2004 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Why Modest Mouse made EW’s Must List

AGE 14

MUSTWORTHINESS After a slow, steady build, the indie-rock band has a hit single (the dreamy stop-and-go anthem ”Float On”), a video on MTV, and critics — who can’t get enough of the band’s fourth album, ”Good News for People Who Love Bad News” — tucked in its pocket. Why won’t 28-year-old singer Isaac Brock (upper right) indulge in a little ego stroke?

HOW HE MAINTAINS MODESTY ”We started the band when we were teens,” says Brock of the group, which also includes (counterclockwise from top left) Eric Judy, Benjamin Weikel, and Dann Gallucci. ”So, thankfully, it’s too late to get bigheaded.”

ON OUTSIDE SOURCES OF VALIDATION ”I’d be as happy if the new record sold 10 billion copies as I would if it sold zero copies. Okay, okay, there’s a bit of bulls— there. I’d be unhappy if it was a real stinkeroo.”

EARLY INSPIRATION ”When I first started playing music, I would have been happy to sound just like the Pixies. Thank God I never pulled that off.”

ON HIS MUST LIST Anything by Tom Robbins

NEXT A slot on Lollapalooza starting July 14

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