Ben + Vesper are unlike most married couples that you meet.
First off, this New Jersey duo are in their own two-piece band that is simply called, well, Ben + Vesper. Sure, they make music together—and often sing in perfect harmony—but few couples could have amassed as diverse a musical background as they have, as their indie-pop songs tend to shift between styles often on the drop of a dime, incorporating backwoods banjo-picking, oboe-fueled interludes, or full-on girl-group backing vocals all without breaking a sweat. These elements are never forced: they happen naturally, and although these deviations are often unexpected, they are surprising in the best way possible.
No wonder the band is signed to the eclectic folk label Sounds Familyre, worked with likes of Sufjan Stevens, and as of this past January, released its second full-length album, Honors. Taking a break from touring, the band sat down to answer PopMatters’ famed 20 Questions, with Ben revealing that Xanadu made him cry, that Vesper was a midwife apprentice at one point, and how one of the members is currently working on “a robot that gives you quarters when you’re sad” . . .