More than anything, Aly Spaltro has 20,000 second-hand DVDs to thank for her first album. Despite being recorded at a proper studio in her recently adopted home of Brooklyn, Ripely Pine showcases songs conceived during her tenure at Bart's & Greg's DVD Explosion in Brunswick, Maine. Little did customers know, the same store they'd drop off their Transformers movies was providing the ideal four-year cocoon for the development of a major musical talent. Spaltro worked the 3:00 PM to 11:00 PM shift. Each night, after locking up, she'd walk past Drama and Horror, pull out her music gear from behind a wall of movies, and write and record songs until morning broke. She did this every day, drawing strength from the monotony of her routine and testing out multiple techniques, approaches and instrumentation. Anger, confusion, love, happiness and sadness reigned, and the songs ran rampant, with little form or structure. Isolated for those many hours, Spaltro let melodies morph together, break apart and pair up. This is how she taught herself to write music and sing.
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