no. 4 — Room Noises by Eisley

Eisley feels rare. They don’t exist in their original form anymore, but when I first started listening to them (thanks again, mom) it was a group of siblings and cousins, every one of them young and talented. Now, the band is primarily fronted by Sherri DuPree Bemis, one of the original sisters who led the cascading harmonies and vocals on their songs. She is married to Max Bemis of Say Anything, and they have an insanely gorgeous family that Sherri posts about on Instagram a lot. I’m definitely not in the age bracket of her typical followers, but it’s really amazing to see how down to earth they are, and the eclectic, artistic ways they’re raising their kids.

Eisley feels like a family band. Not just because they are a family, and all the siblings have gone on to have massive, beautiful families of their own that I follow on social media, but also because my entire family loves them. I have a vague memory of planning to emulate them with my sister, both of us planning to learn how to sing as well as the DuPree sisters and starting a band. Their songs are so fun to sing along to. I remember putting this album on when I was alone in the house, blasting it loud enough to cover my own wonky pitch to feel like I was singing with them, a pod of best friends who happen to be related. I also remember recording myself singing these songs, playing them back to myself to see if I could sing. Obviously, I wasn’t very good, as my sister and I are decidedly not in a band together touring the world.

Lost at Sea was my favorite track when I was younger, because I would pretend to literally be lost at sea, singing along as if it was my own soundtrack as I navigated the waves. Now, off this album, I love Brightly Wound the most. The song always reminds me of my sister and I around the holidays, which is bittersweet when I won’t be seeing her this thanksgiving. A fun shout out is Just Like We Do, a song I sent to a girl I liked in high school to try to tell her (unsuccessfully) that I had a crush on her. Either she knew and didn’t care, or I was just too subtle. Or that song sounds more like a lullaby than a love song but honestly I stand by the attempted romance!

Anyway, I’ve only seen Eisley live once. They played in some strange room that functioned as a daycare during the week, and a concert venue on the weekends. It was fantastic. They have a whole conglomerate of other bands the original members play in, pairing with spouses and other musicians to form at least five groups. They usually put out a Christmas album, which I have on repeat throughout December, but this album remains my favorite of theirs.

You can listen to the album here

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Jenna Sylvester

Jenna Sylvester

non-binary writer and gardener. I'm stressed out.