Intern Pick’s of the Week: Songs We Scream in the Shower

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Ellie’s Pick: “Be Sweet” – Japanese Breakfast

Living with roommates, I think the most acceptable place to belt is in the shower, since the water drowns out a lot of the noise. So when queuing songs to sing I typically choose upbeat and vocally challenging music. As a result, my pick for this week is “Be Sweet” by indie-pop band Japanese Breakfast! Released on March 2, 2021, “Be Sweet” is the lead single from the band’s third album Jubilee. Nominated for Best New Artist and Best Alternative Music Album at the 64th annual Grammy Awards, after listening to “Be Sweet,”  it is easy to recognize why. Michelle Zauner, the brain behind it all, knows exactly how to capture your attention the moment you hit play.

“Be Sweet” wastes no time, kicking off with a killer bassline and a funky drum beat to match. Incorporating various synths and dissonant harmonies, this track has a classic 80’s feel to it. Zauner describes the concept as having a ‘woman of the night’ persona. She notes influences such as Madonna and Janet Jackson. But the production also reminds me of Tears for Fears and Duran Duran. With positively unforgettable melodies and lyrics, you’ll be jamming to this song all shower long.

Claire’s Pick: “Bros” –  Wolf Alice

I love to sing and I love the shower. With that being said, rocking out in the shower is one of my favorite things to do. I can always count on Wolf Alice to have me shaking and screaming. Wolf Alice is an English Rock band from London. “Bros” is a cathartic rock track about friendship. It was released on their gold-selling debut album My Love is Cool. 

Lined with sweet, nostalgic lyrics, “Bros” will have you calling your childhood best friend. It brings you into a world that is simple and free. The pacing of the vocal melody is jaunty and quick, almost as if she is speaking at you. I find myself stomping my feet and pressing replay just to see if I can keep up. The chorus is a hopeful release screaming,“Are your lights on? Are your lights still on? I’ll keep you safe. I’ll keep you strong.” “Bro’s is a memorable ode to friendship with melodies that will have you rocking out in and out of the shower.

Christina’s Pick: “Better As Friends” – Eighty Ninety

One of my favorite songs to shower-sing to is Eighty Ninety’s “Better As Friends”. This track dropped as a single in late 2020, later being released as part of their 2022 album The Night Sky. The NYC-based duo includes Abner and Harper James, brothers who managed to make a name for themselves in the indie-pop genre, earning praise from Billboard, Huffington Post, and even Taylor Swift.
 “Better As Friends” focuses on “the desire to live in the past rather than face the end, and how loving someone can mean wanting the best for them even if that no longer includes you,” the duo shares in an interview with The Indiependent. Lyrics like “So here I am living in the past again, once you tell someone that you know they’re the one and you love ’em, can you really be better as friends?” add such a relatable and powerful emotion to the song. Overall, this brutally honest track is the perfect heartbreak anthem to belt in the shower when you feel like catapulting yourself to the feels!

Caden’s Pick: “Misty Mountains” – Peter Hollens ft. Tim Foust

While I do not do a ton of belting in the shower, “Misty Mountains” is probably my first choice when I feel the need to play with the acoustics. Any version of this song will suffice, but I chose Peter Hollens’ version because I enjoy the arrangement and it is longer than the version from The Hobbit movie. Due to the fact that I have a lower voice, I do my best to find songs that are more comfortable to sing. Since Tim Foust, the bass singer in this version of the song and in the group Home Free, has a voice that rivals a ship’s fog horn, I find it fun to sing along with his part. If I am feeling adventurous, I may try to belt out those high notes that Peter Hollens sings in the middle sections of this song. While I can sometimes be successful, it usually doesn’t feel or sound fantastic.

The note that catches the attention of most first-time listeners is probably the very last note that Tim Foust hits. It is a G#1, for those that find that information useful/interesting, and it is done using false vocal chords – a “growl.” I have been trying to replicate that note for quite some time and I have not yet found the proper technique for growling. I will also say that the finale of the song just doesn’t feel the same when that note isn’t growled or when I go to a lower note. It doesn’t carry the same amount of satisfaction. Maybe one of these days…