California Dreamin'

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THRILLERS: Their fans include Bono, Oasis, Coldplay and the Stones

Most European bands hope that someday, when they finally hit it big, they can lie on a California beach and soak up the sun. But the Thrills hit the beach early — and that's where they found their sound. In the summer of 1999, the five young Dubliners headed to San Diego in a last-ditch effort to keep their band together. They rented a small beach house, dragged an old couch onto the sand and spent four months listening to everything from Bob Dylan to Burt Bacharach. Returning home, they wrote songs that oozed California sunshine. Four years later, with their...

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