Portland, Oregon quartet the von Trapps are, as their name suggests, four descendants of the Trapp Family Singers, the inspiration behind the popular musical and film The Sound of Music. Sofia, Melanie, Amanda and August von Trapp, the grandchildren of Werner von Trapp, have performed together since their youth, working on beautifully melding their voices while interpreting the music of others. The von Trapps won’t release their first collection of original tunes, Dancing in Gold, until April 14th, but Rolling Stone has the EP’s title track available to hear now.
The quartet draw influence from numerous musicians ranging from the Beach Boys and Beach House to Fleet Foxes and Francois Hardy. The impact of those artists, as well as the the quartet’s close-knit sound, shine through on “Dancing in Gold,” an almost-alien slice of indie pop that the band says “is about embracing the imperfections of youth.”
“It’s for everyone who feels constrained by their years and needs to remember that the world is overwhelming for everyone, and taking the right amount of time to grow up is better than trying to pretend you don’t need to,” the band tells Rolling Stone of the title track. “The style is something of a mix of different music genres. We anchored it in the playful satisfaction of 1960’s pop-Americana, yet drifted on that line into the regions of surf, Louisiana big band and most importantly, a special sound of our own.”
Dancing in Gold, the first of three EPs the von Trapps plan on releasing in the next two years, was recorded with Blind Pilot’s Israel Nebeker serving as producer. “This new chapter in our career feels very electric; I think our current sound is super fresh, personal, and fun,” the von Trapps add. “Fourteen years of touring the world together has given each of us a well of inspiration, and we are at a point where all of that energy is overflowing. How each of us blend our styles together is both a challenge and a thrilling discovery for us, yet this first creation, Dancing in Gold, found a wonderfully surprising and compelling place.”