Single: Singrs – Beam 

Beam, the new single from Singrs, the duo comprising of Michael Beswetherick and Joshua Serrano, is a strangely arresting alt pop affair.

It is the first single from their new EP, Make Myself Feel Better with more singles set to be released soon. An online collaboration, with tracks being sent back and forth between Dallas and Brooklyn, the song was developed further by Bennett Littlejohn (Hovvdy, Claire Rousay) whose careful hand guided the final mix. Despite the virtual air miles in the song’s development, Beam still possesses a close-miked intimacy where ideas, sounds and sentiment intertwine seamlessly.

It begins with pop-country aesthetics in its shuffling rhythm and mournful guitar, but when the whispered, layered vocals arrive it enters dream-pop territory (with echoes of something tangibly 80s in their dynamics).

This ethereal tenderness is subtly fractured by the growing strands of distortion that build and break, with guitars sounding like bursts of background radio static or, on occasion, a suddenly screaming saw. And then it fades into muted silence. The music’s tonal crescendo and then ultimate retreat is perhaps an attempt to match the emotional complexities that come with grief, one of the song’s primary subjects. Whether this is authorial intent or not, these moments of distortion feel like a release, they feel cathartic. 

The duo clearly does not shy away from the big, deeply personal stuff- dealing with death and life, and with love, the latter the titular ‘beam’ in question. As such, the song has a redemptive quality – dealing in part with the complex responses we have when loved ones are lost and found (in different ways).

There is something slightly synthetic in their layered vocals- somehow both detached and emotive- but this lends an otherworldly quality to the three minutes the song stays for. The underlying acoustic strum of those shuffling chords and that simple, foot-tapping drum beat, ground everything in a familiar sound world with that gliding twang of steel guitar offering enticing counterpoint.

The power that music itself has to heal and give emotions and memories a protected home is also a key driver for the lyrical conceit. As the songs states, “The thing about music it’s a memory, If you wanna feel again then you hit repeat.” I’m sure Singrs are hoping that you’ll hit repeat after listening to Beam; I would recommend that you do just that.

Written by M. A. Welsh (Misophone)