Huh, I forgot there were still bands who want to rock like this… and now I realize how much I miss them. Sleepy Sun play sweeping alt-rock that swings for the bleachers with a poetic beating heart. The San Francisco group draws on a lineage that winds through the godhead evocations of Pink Floyd and Mick Ronson-era Bowie, exquisite 80s mope from Echo & the Bunnymen and the Catherine Wheel, the heart-on-their-sleeve romanticism of Jeff Buckley, and the early millennium stomp of Doves and Secret Machines. On “Seaquest,” you can almost hear the gulls squawking overhead as brave Ulysses steers the ship toward a dazzling horizon.
“Seaquest” represents the uplifting end of the spectrum heard on Sleepy Sun’s new album Private Tales. At the other end is a foreboding, Clash of the Titans-force crunch of distorted guitar and pounding drums, exemplified by the literally awesome “Crave.” If frontman Evan Reiss has the cojones to serve up a line like “I’ll be upstairs in the kitchen, cookin’ up a spell for you!” with a straight face, then I salute you, brother. Private Tales is one of the more exhilarating additions to June’s new music releases.
SLEEPY SUN ON TOUR: July 21 – Visalia, CA @ Cellar Door
July 22 – Las Vegas, NV @ Bunkhouse w/ Mr. Elevator
July 23 – Tucson, AZ @ Congress
July 25 – Dallas, TX @ Club DaDa
July 26 – Austin, TX @ Barracuda
July 27 – El Paso, TX @ Lowbrow
July 28 – Albuquerque, NM @ Sister Bar w/ Froth
July 30 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Urban Lounge
August 1 – Boise, ID @ Nuerolux
August 2 – Portland, OR @ Liquor Store
August 3 – Vancouver, BC @ Cobalt
August 4 – Seattle, WA @ Nectar Lounge
August 5 – Klamath Falls, OR @ Gino’s
A sociology professor living in upstate New York, Leonard Nevarez is patiently waiting until his kids are old enough for a family roadtrip to Maryland Deathfest. He blogs at musicalurbanism.org and is writing a book about Martha & the Muffins and the late 70s/early 80s downtown Toronto music scene.