We’d like to introduce you to killer Brooklyn band She Keeps Bees, and I’ll try to get through it without making any cheap bee-related puns.
Bluesy rock from She Keeps Bees is utterly heartbreaking. It will move you, like you’ve never been moved before.
The bluesy rock duo formed in 2006 with a rather unorthodox start. Singer-songwriter and guitarist Jessica Larrabee had dabbled in few bands before recording the heartbreakingly open debut album Minisink Hotel, as a solo project under the Bees moniker derived from her surname.
She then met recording engineer Andy LaPlant one fateful night as she poured him drinks in a bar. He helped produce her music and attended her shows until she recruited him in both life and art, becoming a couple and bandmates once she taught him to play the drums.
They began recording music in their Brooklyn home, and amongst a handful of EP’s and singles, their impressive second album Nests earned them a spot on the 2010 SXSW bill. With no more than straightforward guitar and drums, the release garnered praise for their combination of raw, sparse blues and gritty rock, as well as for Larrabee’s incredibly fiery yet soulful and seductive vocals.
As the music kept coming with third LP Dig On in 2011, so too did the admiration, with common comparisons to more senior folk songstresses like PJ Harvey, Cat Power and fellow Broolynite Sharon Van Etten, who delivered high praise in suggesting that Larrabee “has more soul in one finger than most female singers have in our scene”. Putting every ounce of themselves into their fervent live shows, Larrabee will “sing until my stomach hurts while Andy beats the shit out of the drums”.
2014 will see She Keeps Bees release their fourth full length effort Eight Houses in mid-September – which will feature Van Etten – and you can get a taste of the first moody, stripped-down single Is What It Is now on their Bandcamp page. With a huge tour of the States scheduled through August and September in support of the album, they’re going to be busy little… people. With a sound so intimate and raw, they will force their way under your skin. Catch up on their back catalogue and you will understand their hype as a buzz band. Shit! Almost made it.
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