Each member of Phosphene contributed in their own unique way to the creation of the Oakland-based trio’s new single, “Be Mine”, which premieres today exclusively on The Bay Bridged.
“It began as an acoustic, George Harrison-inspired demo that Rachel recorded,” drummer Matt Hemmerich recently told me over email, referring to his bandmate and girlfriend, singer/guitarist Rachel Frankel. “I started writing lyrics based on the melody, and once the structure of the song was solidified, Kevin
Frankel and Kaw also swapped their traditional roles on this track, with the former on rhythm guitar and bass and the latter on lead guitar. The band’s sound, which they describe as melding “dark dream-pop with shoegaze,” is clearly still very much a work in (very enjoyable) progress.
Hemmerich and Frankel started dating in 2010 while both were students at SF State, and Phosphene soon followed. Guitarist Kaw joined during the winter of 2013-14, after he met his future bandmates while waiting in line for a songwriting Q&A featuring Aaron Dessner and Matt Berninger of The National.
One Kickstarter later and their debut LP was in the books, recorded at Tiny Telephone before dropping last July. It was shortly thereafter that they found what has become their new home for recording.
“We stumbled upon Different Fur through the Converse Rubber Tracks program, and after recording [previous single] “Silver” with Sean Paulson, we knew we had found the right fit,” Hemmerich said, responding to a question about recording “Be Mine” at the San Francisco studio. “Sean understands us and our sound (even as it continues to develop over time), and he also has a masterful intuition when it comes to mixing–there’s really good chemistry. Different Fur is also just a welcoming, comfortable space–the staff there really shows support for everyone who comes through the door, even long after the sessions are done.”
“Be Mine” will eventually be on a new EP, which Phosphene plans to record at Different Fur and release sometime fall this year. Don’t be deceived by the single’s title or cover art. “At surface level, the track can be taken as a heartbreak,” Hemmerich explained. “However, I believe this character that the narrator lost isn’t necessarily a romantic partner. This person could be a past version of themselves, someone who takes their own art too seriously.”
Listen to “Be Mine” below, exclusively here on The Bay Bridged, and then get info on Phosphene’s upcoming gig at Awaken Cafe in Oakland with Growwler and Perhapsy.
Growwler, Phosphene, Perhapsy
April 11, 2015