Video Premiere: Skinny Bones Spare Room Sessions

Photo by Nina Corcoran

Photo by Nina Corcoran

“Well it’s two guys, a fair amount of wires, some christmas lights, and over six minutes of unexpected audio load. It makes me feel followed. I’m strangely okay with that.”

~ a fictional version of myself, who just watched a video containing two guys, a fair amount of wires, some christmas lights, and over six minutes of unexpected audio load. It made her feel followed. She was strangely okay with that.

Even an attempted bystander response touches on the intrigue felt by Skinny Bones fans, both local and not: tons of noise via only two boys.

With the folktronic duo of Jacob Rosati and Christopher Stoppiello, live listening is an input-to-output marvel. Rosati covers guitar and vocals, Stopiello does the same with percussion, and variations on button-pushing and knob-turning are delegated between the two. Workloads pile high as layers are added, and listeners/viewers/general lucky souls hear everything—including the kitchen sink.

They’ve instrumented dirty dishes before, hence the kitchen amenity inclusion.

Somehow the Jamaican Plain natives make it all performable, and today you can wallow in that “but you’re only two people” mystery even more by checking out Skinny Bones’s Spare Room Sessions video, put together via Fitz Ross Productions. It’s a must-watch look into the pair’s one-by-one performance style alongside a lengthened version of “Leave,” perhaps Noise Floor‘s token introspective anthem.

Listening to “Leave” is already enough to turn any stared-at ceiling into a daydreamed analysis of where daydreaming goes sour. The lyrics are direct in proclaiming that “It’s the thought that destroys who I am, who we are,” leaving a staggered build of sound to ease listeners into the idea. Above all, the video highlights that second part.

The beginning, as like the song, is wide open for focus on the music. Camera angles morph in and out of focus on the instruments themselves and what the duo is doing to them. In fact, Rosati’s voice doesn’t even enter the picture until past three minutes in. In this way, the whole set takes on a “workshop” feel as the two toy with increasingly dense noise.

Once the song’s momentum surpasses that point of “it can’t just be two guys doing this,” individual shots of both musicians somewhat answer the question of “how.” The camera’s view from behind Stoppiello’s drum set is so informative that is deserves extra attention. No less can be said about clips spotlighting Rosati’s tinkering of sorts.

The song certainly keeps it’s artistic distance, but seeing Skinny Bones play it helps clarify some curiosities too.

Oh. That’s what makes that sound. Good to know. Still surreal.