Three sisters pouring their heart into a sound that echoes from the land around them—that’s the idea behind Spinster, a trio of musicians who produce a gorgeous and slightly skewed take on harmonized art pop. Their work is restrained but filled with a rambunctious energy that courses through its every muscle and tendon. Their music evokes long evenings on front porches with close friends as both familiar discussions and musical notes drift up into the darkening sky.
Built around the coordinated and considerable talents of Rosalie, Rachel and Amelia (all sharing the surname Graber), the band was founded after they discovered their grandfather’s accordion tucked away in a closet. After some time spent learning covers of various pop songs on a handful of different instruments, they felt as though they were ready to begin creating publicly as Spinster. Trading on the sounds of upright bass, accordion, glockenspiel, mandolin, washboard and an assortment of other musical contraptions, they’ve built a sound born from old-timey folk histories and modern indie pop aesthetics.
For the video to their song, “Here You Are,” the band enlisted the help of Annie Huntington, Daniel Jacobs and Brian Gilbert—all people who understand can translate their unique sound in a way that can be heard and seen with as little interference as possible. Filmed in a single room, with books, strung lights, portraits and an errant baby crawling around, the band intone their joyous sound with little regard for anyone else in the room. This is music made by people who love music and love the simple act of sharing those sounds with others.
Bass plucks shake and echo while an accordion bends and breathes. Voices are raised together as a slight percussive rhythm is created and maintained. The song is a subtle and beautiful reminder that music can be both intimate and universal, that it can be played for a full audience or for just a few people in a room with cat paintings and plants. The track reaches a sort of ecstatic euphoria as the sisters play off one another in a way that only those who’ve known each other for decades can manage. Here’s hoping that an official record is just around the corner.
Joshua Pickard covers local and national music, film and other aspects of pop culture. You can contact him on Facebook, Twitter or by email. The opinions expressed in this column belong solely to the author, not Nooga.com or its employees.