Southern California quintet Sleeptalk are introducing listeners to their beautifully unique sound on their debut full-length release. Throughout these twelve songs, the band easily expands on an already established sound - a stunning blend between somber, haunting instrumentals and bright, poppy vocal work. Coupled with an overall theme of young love, the album is a bittersweet and gorgeous release.
Following the album’s intro, “Indio, California” manages to easily blend dark, moody soundscapes with big, bright choruses. This song in particular is heartbreakingly beautiful, a huge opener that really sets the tone for the following ten songs. It’s moody and feels like falling in love - dreamy and too good to be true.
The album’s second song, “Midnight” unfortunately might threaten to lose you right off the bat with a very mellow and atmospheric tone, but where it slows things down, the poppy and catchy “Young” follows and thankfully picks things right back up. The warm “Bright Eyes” follows suit, doing a great job at capturing the feeling of young love.
Although the moods and tones on Strange Nights do tend to sound very similar as a whole, individually, Sleeptalk do a great job of showcasing their versatility from track to track. Where “Bright Eyes” feels warm and innocent, the following “Bones” is significantly darker. Then comes the flawless, "Strange Nights," which has a little bit of everything that makes for a strong Sleeptalk song - great guitar work, a groove that’ll have you bobbing your head along in no time, atmospheric instrumentals and warm, inviting vocals.
As previously mentioned, the only downside on the album is that the album can tend to feel a little flat at times. Vocally, things tend to stay on the same level throughout many of the songs with no real peaks or valleys, but this is made up for in the stunning musical landscapes, diverse sounds between tracks and a few standout moments throughout the album. Take the chorus for the heartbreaking “February,” for instance. Vocally, this emotional track really stands out from the pack as the song chronicles the feeling of hopelessness when you realize that you can’t change someone’s mind or make them love you.
As a whole, the album is a stunning exploration of Sleeptalk’s dreamy and atmospheric sound. Within these twelve songs, the band easily establish an incredibly unique sound, and one that they’ll only be able to expand on more in the future. If this is only the pushing off point, Sleeptalk will definitely go far.
Listen to "Strange Nights," "Indio, California" or "February"
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