True. I feel uncomfortable with the sub-genre of 'shoegaze-rock'... I noticed right away that Sleepcrawler was, in fact, shoegaze/rock but if you were to flip through my records and CDs you would be genre-twisting to find even a small percentage of appropriate titles that could be safely classified as shoegaze... Perhaps Soul Sides "Trigger" (Dischord, 1988) or maybe even the seminal Rites of Spring "S/T" (Dischord, 1985). Post-Hardcore... Emo... Screamo... It's a fucking mystery to me, but I know it's out there.
Jerry Dirr, Phratrys head-honcho, even acknowledged my reception of the record right off the start (see Fig.1). So I approached Sleepcrawler with little to no stress. I had nothing to loose.
Right from the start of Sleepcrawlers first track, "Burning Girl" captured me. I soon found myself turning up the volume knob and when side one was finished, the record was flipped and I found myself captivated by that side too.
On Sleepcrawler State Song deliver a great listen promoting deep, emotional and introspective thoughts. Dare to call it passion... It's the kind of record you get lost in... Each song building up to the next song and the next song builds upon that and then you can just adjust accordingly from there on. Sleepcrawler is the soundtrack to something bigger, jams steeped in heavy cryptic allegory and symbolism of a post 9/11 world fueled by paranoia, isolation and hopelessness. The gratuitous use of piano is risky but it works on Sleepcrawler. At the same time this record gives your ears and a underlying but shining beacon of hope that seems to find its place just under the surface. State Song wield contradiction as a weapon and your own psyche as the ammunition... There's a war out-there-- a war that is not only on the physical level but on the mental side and I dare (also to say)-- a spiritual level. Upon repetitive listens Sleepcrawler sounds as if it may be a concept album which is ok-- like the 'bigger picture' against the 'bigger picture'
The release show for Sleepcrawler is on April 26th with Mallory at The Northside Tavern. A listening party will take place earlier on April 22nd at The Listing Loon.
Label: Phratry Records http://phratryrecords.com
RIYL: Radiohead ( on Ok Compiter), Fourth Wife, New Order, Emo,
MFJD: "Burning Girl"