Singled Out: Mungbean's Am Your Eyes

12/08/2016
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Mungbean

Synth-pop duo Mungbean recently released their new single "Am Your Eyes," from their forthcoming EP. We asked Emma Swysgood to share the story behind the new track with us. Here is the story:

The single "Am Your Eyes" was the first song Sean and I recorded together. Sean had been working on solo electronic instrumentals, by utilizing new programs, gear, and recording methods. He started by sampling a guitar riff that one of our good friends had written, and repurposed it in a different direction, by incorporating a heavier riff with an ambient, electronic beat.

When Sean first showed me the instrumentals, "mungbean" was not yet "mungbean." Sean and I had only ever performed together acoustically at a local event in town - doing the opposite of what we're doing now. We stripped down more complex tracks in order to cover it acoustically, as opposed to writing acoustically and building it electronically. We learned quite a bit from this process. Covering Adult Jazz, Radiohead and Grizzly Bear allowed us to explore different styles of composition, and approach the process in converting more technical tracks into an acoustic piece.

The day Sean sent me an instrumental beat he made, I turned it up in my car and started singing. It's my favorite way to find a melody. Whatever comes out usually sticks, because it's coming from a very organic place in my chest and in my mind.

This song in particular was heavily influenced by a conversation I had in a class earlier that day. The conversation in class covered the intersection of medical and cultural discourses in literature. More specifically, the discrepancies between how we talk about male and female bodies in social and medical contexts. I left the conversation feeling very confused and frustrated. As a woman, one often feels that even the powers that are supposed to be objective, are working against you. In a social context, your body is always marketable and consumable. In a medical context, your anatomy is trivialized and degraded in comparison to men's.
The song explores these feels; questioning why our physical, tangible attributes are of constant focus, and why our intangible elements, emotions and intelligences, are glossed over. It is resigned in frustration, but still making a point to say something.

Hearing is believing. Now that you know the story behind the song, listen for yourself and learn more about the group right here!

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