by Catherine Vianale
Don’t let the word “debut” fool you - Bees and Enormous Tigers (colloquially known as BAET) are no strangers to the music scene. Their first single release finds the band letting their evolved sound shine through, as “Get Home Safe” is a track that has existed as an anthem in the local Tallahassee music scene for years. The group first formed in Crawfordville, Florida in 2009 with twin brothers Alex and Peter Koenig, and since then has gained esteem and a devoted following in their hometown and abroad. The pair are also visual artists and founders of the BAET Collective art group, whose murals can be found glittering Tallahassee’s most beloved local businesses and accompanying their musical releases and merchandise with their signature style. Another noteworthy aspect of this band is their devotion to collaboration and their willingness to include new members; as a result, no two BAET shows are exactly the same.
I spoke with Peter Koenig, the band’s lead songwriter, about his inspiration for the track and personal influence as a visual artist and musician. He cites the imagery in dreams and surrealism as the main inspiration behind the single and his art in general, as well as the theme of change and personal discovery. The track’s iconic riff, which remains constant throughout the entire song, was said to be the easiest part to write, and the rest of the song came just as naturally once introduced to the group. Koenig also noted that this song was the fastest for them to write as a group.
“A lot of this song is about finding yourself, which is what the title signifies” he explained.
In a world where identity can be portrayed however one desires - via social media, behind the mask of one’s art - this theme holds personal meaning to many and lends to the song’s relatable, inviting atmosphere. This release also marks the band’s first experience working in a music studio for a release, Tallahassee’s Indianhead Factory, and their first non-homemade recording. The band feels that this allowed them to focus more on the creative side, much to their relief, and that the studio’s hip-hop influence led to a new approach to their own recording process.
Their single “Get Home Safe” can be downloaded for free on Bandcamp, with a vinyl component available at the end of November.