Next Wave #1082: beaux

In Association With Vero True Social

Imagine finishing school early to pursue music, being picked up by a record label from a DM and later finding your music gaining the seal of approval from Matty Healy of The 1975. Sounds pretty dreamy, right? For beaux, this was his pathway into the music industry. He’s now set to release his fourth EP in the space of two years. And in doing so, he is crafting his case for being Dirty Hit’s (beabadoobee, The 1975, Rina Sawayama) next pop prodigy.

So, what’s beaux’s secret behind his rapid rise to success? “YouTube tutorials,” he immediately replies with zero hesitation. “I was listening to a lot of The 1975 as well as No Rome and I’d think ‘how did they make that sound?’ then start to twiddle with buttons until it made that exact sound.” That same sense of sonic refinement continues to flow through beaux’s music today. His 2020 debut EP may have been the guinea pig for “teaching myself how to produce” in his words. But with the arrival of his fourth body of work, he’s well on the way to honing his own sound.

“The EP is called ‘How Can I Sleep? I’m Wide Awake’ and I think it sort of plays into my real life,” says beaux. “I struggle getting to sleep a lot and I end up staying awake for hours because I feel like I’m constantly thinking. Sometimes you’re so excited about something like getting into a new relationship, or you could be worrying all night about something. It’s really just me spilling out my night time thoughts!”

Next Wave #1082: beaux

These juxtapositions between youthful optimism and dread channel the voice of Gen Z on beaux’s latest EP. Tracks like ‘benadryl’ fizz with love-fuelled exhilaration, but other moments such as ‘can’t help but let you down’ put vulnerability in the spotlight to dazzling effect. “I lost my dad when I was seven-years-old,” says beaux. “That meant that me and my mum were always really close. It was always just us two. She’s always known how much I’ve wanted to do music and always backed it. So, that makes me want to ensure that I’m doing as much as I can for her because she always does so much for me – which is what this song is about.”

beaux also swapped the familiar confines of his bedroom for the recording studio on this EP. “It felt like a new sound,” beaux adds, citing collaborations with producer Jonah Summerfield as being a guiding force in this new approach. But another important transition beaux’s artistry has undergone this year is taking to the live stage for the first time. He sold out his first headline show earlier this month at London’s Camden Assembly, with fellow rising stars Cathy Jain and tinyumbrellas also on the bill. 

Going on a global tour is what beaux describes as his “biggest goal”. But with the path towards this looking extra treacherous in today’s musical landscape, beaux admits it’s hard not to worry what the future has in store. Nonetheless, you can’t help but feel he’s on the right path. “There’s always little things in the back of my head that can make me feel apprehensive now and then,” he says. “I don’t have a plan as such if I can’t do music… I like to think that whatever happens, I’ll be able to find a way to base a living around doing my music. I’m not unrealistic with the industry though; there are so many talented artists out there and not all of them will be able to do it forever. Only a few manage to do it for the rest of their lives. I’m gonna try my best.”

‘how can I sleep? i’m wide awake’ is out now on Dirty Hit.

Words: Jamie Wilde
Photo Credit: Joshua Atkins

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