Sleep Well - We Know It From the Silence, They Know It From the Stillness
Record Label: None
Release Date: February 9, 2010
In a state not generally known for its indie rock scene, it is easy to overlook a band like Sleep Well. For their debut full-length album We Know It From the Silence, They Know It From the Stillness, the Coventry, CT quintet seek to change that.
Opening track "The Greeter" immediately sets a tone of urgency while showcasing the band's layered sound. The bass-driven midsection gives way to a desperate chant between vocalist/guitarist Adam Gooch and drummer/vocalist Ed Kozyra, a dynamic that works well throughout the album. "Like a Home" is surely single-material, blending pop sensibility with indie creativity, a formula that will undoubtedly draw comparisons to bands like Manchester Orchestra. From here the band explores darker, more brooding territory on songs like "Stop Coughing" and "Hounds", the latter a five-and-a-half minute epic and standout display of Gooch's thoughtful, lamenting lyrical style. "Collection" and "Do You Exist?" are considerably less effective but are by no means poor efforts. Stripped-down album closer "Hounds Pt. II" more than makes up for this through a very tasteful use of strings that help convey a general theme of closure with an underlying sadness.
In the case of this album, the term "indie rock" most certainly does not imply any lack of intensity. The dark lyrical themes and dynamic shifts keep things interesting from start to finish. For the most part these themes are tackled effectively, without sounding juvenile or pretentious. Gooch and lead guitarist Jake Cohen show songwriting prowess beyond their years, and coupled with an extremely proficient rhythm section in drummer Kozyra and bassist Sam Cohen and added depth from keyboardist/synth op Erik Wright, Sleep Well surely have the tools to become an indie powerhouse.
Ultimately, Sleep Well have crafted an especially impressive debut album. With time to hone their craft further, there is no reason they cannot surpass this while separating themselves from their sometimes-too-apparent influences. Of the band's many strengths, it is their knack for intelligent-yet-accessible songwriting and tight musicianship that makes We Know It an album worth listening to.
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Can anyone explain to my why I can't find this album in stores or at amazon.com or slacker radio or anything? Do they have any affiliation with Electric President? When I search "Sleep Well", that's all that comes up. I don't use itunes.