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Travis Parno 02/12/09 01:28 PM

Bank - The Hope Inside Your Sleep
BankThe Hope Inside Your Sleep
Record Label: unsigned
Release Date: September 23, 2008

It’s hard to know what to do with Bank.

Bank is the next big thing. With tunes transitioning between rock, dance, alternative, and indie, The Hope Inside Your Sleep could easily throw down several singles and launch into the stratosphere of radio-friendly stardom. Album opener “Drop Drop” wastes no time establishing the band’s predisposition for pop via spacey riffs, thumping bass lines, and pep rally handclaps. This is TRL-god-rest-its-soul material, through and through. In a perfect, 360 deal sort of world, the title track would provide the ideal, piano-laced second single. Get out those lighters (cell phones) as we all wave our arms together inside the Honda Civic Tour pavilion. Hell, Bank have already made the Absolute 100. They’ve left their homes in Boise, Idaho – who knows where they’ll head from there?

Bank is a child that needs to be put in the corner. Although their instrumentation is swanky enough to bring to mind Nightmare of You, their lyrics reek of Plain White Ts. It’s a maddening combination that, in this case, speaks less to a lack of sincerity than to a lack of creative emphasis. Even the most obvious pop tracks whip around and offer some absolutely delicious melody arc or gang harmony that completely saves the music from imminent combustion. Lyrics aside, this is an exuberant album. But this isn’t Explosions in the Sky, this is Bank, and no amount of vocal excellence (which they are certainly blessed with) can gloss over sugary songs like “Get Together,” which trips through such poetic disasters as, “Hey now baby, hang out for a while/ I will take you to the place where you can smile” and “I haven’t held you for some time/ But your lips are always on my mind.”

Bank is addictive, in the most bewildering and beguiling manner. There’s no real reason that a song like “Friday Night,” a fairly straightforward ode to shows, parties, and carousing with friends, should be so damned enjoyable. There’s something captivating in the simplicity of the song’s chorus that cries “Maybe it’s wrong/ To feel so alive” over bursting riffs and pounding percussion. And then there’s “Goodbye NYC.” Millions of bands, trapped in that endless, sleepless cycle known as Touring, have written travelin’ tunes that namedrop the major stopping points along the road, and yet Bank’s entry doesn’t feel outmoded or world-weary. That’s probably because…

Bank is genuine. Songs about vehicles, with the notable exception of Piebald’s “King of Road,” are typically ticking time-bombs of terrible, but “Black VW” and its tight harmonies and infectious claps feels like a sunny trip through the sleepy Midwest. This doesn’t just sound like a song written by an unsigned band on the road, it is a song written by an unsigned band on the road. It might seem like an obvious statement, but in Bank’s friendly hands, the most basic concepts seem to take on new life. “Heartbreak” is similarly sculpted. It’s not a complicated story: heart break happens, but life goes on. The sheer candor of the track’s theme allows the songwriting to shine and become immediately approachable.

The Hope Inside Your Sleep glitters with potential at one moment, but then turns around to show its tarnished luster. So it’s hard to know what to do with Bank. Theirs is a road, however, that is wide open, and the smart money’s on the chance that their ability to craft enthusiastic, heartfelt hits will lead them to a much bigger stage than Boise, Idaho.

Track List1. Drop Drop
2. Get Together
3. Over Now
4. Black VW
5. The Hope Inside Your Sleep
6. Friday Night
7. Heartbreak
8. Steps
9. Goodbye NYC
10. I Want, I Need
11. Rebecca

Give it a try if you like…Plain White Ts; Nightmare of You; Piebald; Limbeck

Hear it on the internetzOfficial Myspace

Greg.Kushlan 02/12/09 02:01 PM

I saw these guys once or twice, I thought they were pretty good. It's nice to see a band from here getting some press.

cereal4life 02/12/09 02:45 PM

Nightmare of You meets Plain White T's. Haha good review man. With regard to the bad/shallow lyrics of this album, I really don't like it when bands use the word "baby" persistently in songs. My little pet peeve.

jonenm18 02/12/09 09:14 PM

Great Album. Great guys
I've had the pleasure of playing two shows with these guys, and they are even better live than their album.

I highly recommend seeing them if you get a chance. They are super cool and super nice and deserve you're support.

It's a very good album

uglystar03 02/13/09 08:12 AM

Its good to see a band from Boise get onto the site. I'm not that big a fan of this band, but I'll take anything.

xBértox 02/13/09 09:46 AM

Seen these guys a couple of times and they are pretty good, and i'm not even a huge fan of the genre.

Its nice seeing someone repping Idaho.

PUNKORDIE 02/13/09 10:37 AM

great album, great people. i love these guys. favorite songs are "black vw" and "heartbreak".

manwithoutwax 02/13/09 10:56 AM

great band, and review! :-d

GuitarR0cker1 02/13/09 11:02 AM

I am stoked on the fact a band from Idaho is getting good press on AP.

James to Feel 02/13/09 11:18 AM

This reads like a press kit bio more than a review.

Travis Parno 02/13/09 11:26 AM


Originally Posted by manwithoutwax (Post 35775272)
great band, and review! :-d



Originally Posted by James to Feel (Post 35777092)
This reads like a press kit bio more than a review.


Blaner2d2 02/13/09 05:18 PM

this album is great. their first "history of mac orange".... greater.

ValPal 02/14/09 01:59 PM

Travis, you got it right with addictive and genuine!
Bank is what other bands only WISH they could be.

julyof79 02/27/10 08:26 PM

Great album. There is a new one out called "The Alive E.P." available on iTunes. I wonder if that one will be reviewed?