Zambri's Electro-Pop Soundtrack for an Unknown Movie

Just because Jessica and Cristi Jo Zambri share a last name doesn’t mean the sisters are always on the same page. "We don’t really talk about the music we make, which is odd. We tend to just make it and make it our own, but sometimes I wonder what’s going on in her head," Jessica says of the songwriting process behind the group’s debut EP, Glossolalia. "We’re both constantly confused by each other."  You wouldn’t know that just by listening to the record. The Long Island, N.Y. natives have been making music together since they shared a bedroom as kids — "I don’t think we ever did any projects by ourselves, we always did everything together," says Cristi Jo — and Glossolalia delivers the sort of fully-formed, cohesive sound that a lifetime of collaboration might be necessary to achieve. That could be why their college attempts at playing with a full band didn't work. "We decided that we’re most agreeable when it’s just the two of us grinding it out," explains Jessica. "That’s where we landed with this music and that’s why we treat it as our debut, because it’s really the first time, besides being in fifth grade, we’re putting music out together."

What they’re releasing is a collection of challenging, atmospheric, electro-tinged pop songs. Cristi Jo says that comparisons to a horror-movie score have been some of the most apt she’s heard. For the band, it’s a question of where they feel comfortable. "The sounds I hear on this EP shape a world where Cristi Jo and I sit naturally," says Jessica. "A lot of the music was made with our voices -- it’s the instrument we’re more comfortable with, so we decided to use it a lot." Other natural sounds were key in inspiring the noises. "[The sound] kind of starts in a small place and it builds as you’re making it," says Cristi Jo. "It just starts from a place of street sounds and life sounds. We both have hundreds of recordings on our phones of sounds we liked and we tried to bring that to the music." It’s something that makes sense as soon as she says it, the layers of sounds apparent on the EP starting to make sense as a nest of found noises and reinterpreted voice. Guest players including Seth Kasper, who drums live and on the record for the band, and Hooray For Earth’s Noel Heroux, Jessica’s husband, adding drums and vocals, help flesh out the sound and add to the idea that the band ‘s creating a world all its own. "I’m not sure what I hear, but what I feel when I listen to the EP is limitless," says Cristi Jo. "It makes me excited that it can grow and when I think about what we can record next, it seems like we can go any way we want."

Right now, that way seems to be on the road. Zambri will spend the winter on tour while putting the finishing touches on their full-length, scheduled for release in the spring. With any luck, by the time a full-length does come out, the band’s strange, beautiful sound will have caught on with the masses who live for sweet, art-damaged songs notable for their construction as much as anything else. "When we were mixing, we’d get scared at points and went through all of these emotions because it really kind of sounds like a movie soundtrack in an alternative world," observes Cristi Jo. "I wanted it to be this magical, new alternate world. And I hope that’s where the music takes people." In other words: to the same page, just in a totally unfamiliar book.

Zambri "Glossolalia" EP by kaninerecords