Sheetal Singh – former bassist for San Francisco noise pop wonder The Stratford 4 – is going in a different direction with her music, revving up to release a self-titled mini-album under her moniker Forest Bees. Originally driven by her desire to incorporate her familial history into her work, Forest Bees morphed into this beautiful – punk pitchy in its presentation, but almost earthy in tone – piece that gives the listener the impression that the musician is simultaneously experiencing an awakening of sorts.
And perhaps she did. She transformed while creating this art, and you can hear it in the soundscape. “Independence Day” is a bit of a dance track, while “Hollow Bones” fills a deeper, more primal, place in your body with differing instrumentals. While “Golden Dream” is void of the vocal warmth we would otherwise deduce from the title, we’re mesmerized by how she can still evoke a beautiful instrumental section amidst the rough, almost static, sounds that overlay the entire track. “Off Color” comes in from left field, with a hard-hitting percussion section that comes off as wonderfully experimental in tone, though the song feels more mainstream-headed than its predecessors, and we do not mean that as a negative connotation. Singh expertly rounds out the album with “Dust”, perhaps the most alluring of the five tracks. Composed of several differing tempos, this song could be equally enjoyed on a long drive, sitting with friends during wine night, and dancing in a basement club in The Village at 2am.