Formed in 2016, Mungbean began as an exclusively electronic two-piece band. Over the years, the band has added live guitar, drums, bass, and finally keys (in that order).
Now, the five-member group delivers a show more similar to that of a rowdy beat-driven rock band than a polished pop performance. From bathrooms to bedrooms to backyards, all of Mungbean’s published music has been written and recorded by the artists at their homes.
“‘Waking Up’ was actually the second song that we ever wrote, so that’s the first song that we played [in the Broad & High studios],” said vocalist Emma Swysgood.
“I feel like the song is about moving forward – waking up,” Swysgood said.
“That one was actually written in the time period that ‘Waking Up’ was written,” said Swysgood. “It was written a really long time ago. For us, it’s an old song, even though we haven’t recorded it (yet).”
Aimed at You
Guitarist and vocalist Sean Gleeson said they were “in weird patch like at the end of last year (2017) – going through like a lot of band changes and life changes.” Gleeson said when showed Swysgood what he had written for the song she told him, “‘I know exactly where I want to take this,’ and just wrote the rest.”
Follow The Band
Meet The Musicians
Members of Mungbean from left to right: Ian Goldthwaite (keyboard/synth), Emma Swysgood (vocals), Sean Gleeson (guitar/vocals), Colin Giacalone (bass/synth), and Max Joseph (drums).
The Origin Story
On the Band Name
Sean: So when we were doing that show at [Ohio University], [our friend] was like, “I’m making a poster. What’s your guys’ act name?” We’re like, Mungbean Dream …
Emma: She didn’t tell us that she’d shortened it. She started printing it, and then she sent us a mockup of the poster. And she’s like, “Mungbean Dream was too long, so I knocked off the ‘dream.’” And we’re like, OK.
They did consider changing the band name. “It’s still one of the worst band names. It really is,” said Emma. However, when she started asking people about the decision “everybody was like, ‘no, keep it.’ And I was like, ‘Oh, OK, then fine.’ It’s stuck now.”
Fill in the Blank
If you like ___, you’ll like Mungbean.
Emma: If you like sitting in a bedroom by yourself with headphones on, staring at the ceiling. That’s what came to my mind.
Ian: Clouds in the sky.
Max: Low wages and long hours.
When we’re not performing, we’re ___.
Ian: Not me, though. Recording.
Emma: When we’re not performing, we’re probably just hangin’ out.
Sean: Having a good time.
Emma: That’s how so many practices get derailed.
___ is Central Ohio’s best hidden gem.
Colin: Bourbon Street Cafe on Summit.
Sean: The taco truck outside of The Bottle Shop.
Emma: The cats inside of 14-O, and then the burrito truck outside.
Sean: It’s literally a Mexican food truck that has a Mediterranean food truck logo. So you think it’s Mediterranean, but it’s actually the best Mexican food.
The best food in Columbus is ___.
Emma: I really like Strongwater. I work at Land-Grant (Brewing Co.). And then Land-Grant has Ray Ray’s barbecue. So between Strongwater and Ray Ray’s barbecue, I’m, like, set on food.
Max: Mazah in Grandview. It’s a Mediterranean place.
Emma: Pierogi Mountain. That’s the hidden gem of Bourbon Street – Pierogi Mountain is in there.
Max: Johnnie’s bar in Grandview is a good hidden gem. It was built into a house, and it’s a bar.
Pineapple on pizza is ___.
Sean: We are all fans.
Emma: That’s how we know we’ll make it as a band! We all like the same pizza. [Laughs.] I think if you don’t like pineapple on pizza, you just haven’t given it a chance.