by Tyler Lehmann
It’s no secret that there are a lot of pretty stale Christian songs out there. Sure, it’s great that people are singing about Jesus, but is it too much to ask for Christian music that’s actually good music? Fortunately, the up-and-coming indie band The Vespers is proving that spiritual significance and quality music can in fact go together.
A sibling act straight from Nashville, The Vespers are a new favorite in roots music—that smoky-sweet blend of folk, blues and country, with just a hint of gospel. The genre has gained popularity only within the last decade with groups like The Avett Brothers and The Civil Wars.
Sisters Callie and Phoebe Cryar lead The Vespers with their serene voices and string instruments, while brothers Bruno and Taylor Jones supply the rhythm. As the story goes, the foursome first came together at a campfire jam.
The Vespers released their first album, Tell Your Mama, in spring 2010—the same season that brought a devastating flood to their Nashville stomping grounds.
“Our world was really shook up after that May,” Taylor says. “The flood eventually inspired us to quit our other day jobs, school, and pursue music full time, on a leap of faith.”
This year on April 3, The Vespers released their second album, The Fourth Wall. In theater terms, the fourth wall is the invisible divider between the audience and performers. The title serves as a symbol for the band’s efforts to connect with others through their music.
“We decided to go on tour shortly after we joined forces and we really learned what our band was all about while playing to the people at our early shows. It shaped us and that’s how we really became The Vespers. It’s all about connecting with people and breaking down that invisible wall,” Taylor says.
The Fourth Wall pairs clean and simple instrumental arrangements with resonant lyrics. The songs reflect the band’s youthfulness while at the same time expressing a mature, well-formed faith.
The album’s opening track, Better Now, retells the story in John 9:1-12 of Jesus healing a blind man and the people who doubt the miracle. Watch the music video for Better Now below: