Michael Buckner | Frazer Harrison, Getty Images Now this is a collaboration that…
- Posted on Jan 27th 2010 4:00PM by Jillian Mapes
"We were going for that older sound on this record, so analog recording fit the bill," Leigh Watson tells Spinner. "I think about the way the Beatles recorded drums and the way the Motown back-up vocals are recorded, with three singers on one microphone just going for it. When Chandra and I did our backup vocals, we sang both tracks on one microphone."
The result is a dark yet mellow record in which the sultry vocals of Chandra and Leigh Watson stand out enough without overshadowing the retro guitar and organ parts they accompany. The sisters Watson manage to transcend eras, at times sonically resembling 1960s female pop and soul, other times Pink Floyd. For Leigh, 'Talking to Me, Talking to You' is perfect because it isn't exactly perfect.
"We're not all about five million takes of a song and cutting them together like a patchwork quilt," Leigh says. "Chandra and I had this conversation the other night about analog versus digital, and it's not that we're analog snobs, but we like that there are just certain imperfections within analog recording."
But the album's vibe is the product of more than just its recording method. Chandra and Leigh jumpstarted their studio session with a retreat to Yosemite National Park, combining much of their separate writing during time spent there. "On this record, we pushed ourselves to explore," Chandra says. "We spent the last year and a half touring, and just building a confidence in our writing and in our performance. We really hope that on the new record you could feel the emotion in a way that really comes across."
'Talking to Me, Talking to You' is not completely devoid of the Twins' signature Americana flavor though. Having grown up Louisville, Ky., the music of the Appalachian tradition still runs deeply within Chandra and Leigh Watson. You know what they say about taking the country out of the girl.
"Initially there was a hesitance to play any sort of Americana music," Chandra says. "Once we moved to California and grew up out of that sort of rebellious phase, we realized what incredible country and folk influences saturate where we grew up. By moving away we were able to embrace our roots, and I think you can hear some of that in our music. This new record is less Americana than previous records, but we still rely a lot on those techniques and those influences. You can hear it coming through the new material even if it doesn't sound like a folk song."