Sisters and Brothers
Third albums are sometimes tricky. Everyone falls in love with you on the first record; the sophomore release doesn't live up to the debut; and third record is the make-or-break moment. For the Nashville roots quartet The Vespers—composed of sisters Phoebe and Callie Cryar, and brothers Bruno and Taylor Jones—Sisters and Brothers finds them approaching their third album as a chance to take their sound by the horns and do something fresh and bold with it. The Cryars still harmonize and croon with the best of them, particularly on the engaging bluegrass ditty “Cynical Soul,” and their knack for serious soul-searching lyrics is as evident as ever on “Thirst No More” and “Please.” But most of this album is about the band's personal and musical evolution. This is not simply an Americana and folk band anymore; this is also a true-blue country group (“Not Enough”) by way of rock/soul (“Signs”), with a flair for the cinematic. Seriously, listen to the gritty, mid-tempo stomp-rocker “Break the Cycle” and tell me that doesn't sound like the music you would hear on the a crime drama like Justified. With Sisters and Brothers, third time is still charming for The Vespers.