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Milwaukee's The Last Bees channel the Beatles on their latest single, 'Earlier Grave'

The Milwaukee guitar-pop band The Last Bees have a pair of EPs out, a 2019 self-titled EP and an April EP called "Countdown," and there's a third one on the horizon. Today we're excited to share their new single, "Earlier Grave," a Byrds- and Beatles-inspired track from a still-untitled EP the band is planning for next year.

You can stream and read about the single below.

The Last Bees | Photo credit: Ryan Jansen
The Last Bees - "Earlier Grave"

Artists' statement

My dad had just bought me a Rickenbacker 12-string electric guitar as a gift. He knew I was going for a retro rock sound, a la Beatles 1965. "Earlier Grave" was the first song I recorded with my new guitar. I wanted to make him proud when he heard what I did with it. When I was playing him a mix of the song for the first time, his only comment was 'that 12 string guitar just makes the song.' So I was certainly happy to hear him say that.

I didn't use any auto-tune on the vocals. I wanted the vocal to sound more honest and immediate and to almost sound like a plea. The song was inspired by the pandemic and the various attitudes, doubt and extreme thinking that people can fall into. I used "Ticket to Ride" by The Beatles as my model for the track's mood and overall feel. The attitude of that classic Beatles song shows a lot of passion on one side (the side of the singer) and a lot of apathy on the other side (the girl who doesn't care). This reminded me of our current pandemic situation, where there seems to be a lot of passion on one side, and a lot of apathy on the other.

And just like in the Beatles song, the apathetic party feels like they've lost their freedom, and the passionate party values love for others above that. "Earlier Grave" explores a little of both mindsets, but really it is a song about respecting life. It's an anti-unnecessary death song. In that regard, it could be an anti-war song too I suppose. -- Ian Ash, The Last Bees