Cat Martino and Sufjan Stevens Act Like 'Geeky Kids' on 'Yr Not Alone'
A couple of years ago, New York singer-songwriter Cat Martino had back injuries that were compounded by a lack of health insurance. As she now says of that time, it was hard for her to figure out what was going on or how to get better. While at home, Martino came across her boyfriend's pedal board and out curiosity stuck a microphone in it.
"It was really cool," she tells Spinner, "because all of a sudden, there was just this choir sound around me. I could make my voice sound like a bass, and I could make rhythms. It was really just a fun thing to do."
That discovery marked an evolution in her sound, pushing her beyond her previous folk-influenced style. Having recently sung backup on albums and tours by Sufjan Stevens and Sharon Van Etten, Martino steps out on her own with her record 'Yr Not Alone.'
"I had changed and grown as a musician," she says. "The way that I was playing was changing, and the way that I was singing was changing. So it was organic for ['Yr Not Alone'] to be very different. I was exploring new sound palettes and new instruments, so time had passed, and I was doing different things. "
'Yr Not Alone' showcases Martino's expressive and soulful voice against a background of ambient and lush sounds. The album's title track was inspired by Martino's encounter with a Charlie Chaplin-like character during a rehearsal at a café-bar venue in Prague where she was scheduled to perform.
"I just thought he was this beautiful tragic character," she recalls, "and I was interested in who he was. He just came in and then left. It was raining, and it was like this cinematic moment. I realized nobody at the place had known him, and I sat down on the piano