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Beam particle taper oddly shaped

I’m using a beam emitter to create a beam with a specific shape, wide at the beginning and narrowing down towards the end. I’ve set up source and target but the result looks odd - here’s the rough shape I’m going for:

6dac8e4b071527e760ada1bac364f022bf658a6b.png

I was expecting the Taper to do the job but the result is not smooth at all. Bumping up interpolation helps somewhat:

b957efca93a8552c22ea88297405e6c492b6d888.png

Material setup is as basic as it gets:

beamMat.png

I’ve been fiddling with the tangents and a bunch of other settings but nothing got me closer to what I wanted. Did I misunderstand how it’s supposed to work?

How to achieve the effect described above - a beam starting out wide and tapering towards the end?
I know I could do it in the material but was wondering if there’s a way to do it in cascade.

Thanks.