"The fact that we can all sing -- it keeps things spontaneous for us," says Stevie Appelby, guitarist/vocalist from the Irish folk band Little Green Cars. "We can play anywhere at any given time."

For Little Green Cars, "anywhere" includes CMJ (where they were named a breakout band by NPR last year), SXSW (where they played last month), or the Billboard studio, where they recently stopped by for an exclusive interview and live performance.

The five-piece is just finishing up a North American tour, and American audiences have recently gotten acquainted with the band's long-anticipated opening statement. "People don't know all the songs, but they still dance to them and that's a nice feeling," says guitarist/vocalist Adam O'Regan. 

But they soon will. "Absolute Zero" -- which dropped March 26 via Glassnote Records -- finally introduced North America to Little Green Cars. In an exclusive live session for Billboard, the band played two tracks: the triumphant, uptempo "Harper Lee," and the haunting "Kitchen Floor," led by the band's third vocalist/guitarist, Faye O'Rourke.

"It's definitely a collaborative effort in terms of the finished product," says O'Rourke, on the band's writing process. "Usually, the birth of it is Stevie (Appleby) or myself will go and have kind of a raw, chordal thing. And we just give it to the guys and it gets mixed up in a big bowl."

The debut album is the culmination of a long journey that began five years ago, when the folksters began writing songs together at the tender age of 15. University plans were put on hold as the band embarked on a full-time mission to find its sound. Finally, that time has arrived. Produced by Markus Dravs, the man behind Mumford & Sons' monster hit "Babel," "Absolute Zero" pushes Little Green Cars onto the track of their uber-successful labelmates.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

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