By: Ed Dyer
20 April, 2017, 09:53
A quick scroll through Sleeptalking’s social media feed would give you the impression that they were a tribute to 70’s rock ‘n’ roll and all its excesses, or even that you were stuck in a Life on Mars style strange temporal flash back (ignoring the fact Facebook wasn’t a thing back then). But, whilst they do indeed borrow heavily from this most creative of decades their debut EP Oh Isn’t It Strange? illustrates that there is a lot more going on from more recent times. Lines are drawn through the sleaze rock ‘n’ roll of late 80’s California, the proto-grunge of Seattle’s Mother Love Bone and the glam pop androgyny of Suede, all movements and artists who too borrowed heavily from the 70’s but moulded the sounds to suit their own agenda.
But as soon as EP opener ‘Glasshouse’ blasts into your ears you realise that the biggest single influence on the band surely is the majestic sound of Jane’s Addiction. The funked up bassline, jumpy beats and swirling guitars instantly recollect perhaps the 90’s alternative rock scenes most creative sons, but it is the shriek and wail of vocalist Tom Nosek that is the most vivid throwback – the lad sounds uncannily like Perry Farrell in his Ritual De Lo Habitual pomp magnificence.
All four tracks on this EP are heavily cast with the shadow of Jane’s Addiction. ‘Mourn’, is another quiet/loud masterpiece of melody and hook, less rocket propelled than its predecessor but no less effective whilst third up ‘Professional Dreamer’ is a funky swagger of a track that equally wouldn’t have been out of place on a Mother Love Bone record. It all gets wrapped up with the Suede-gone-heavy of ‘Strange’, ensuring that from beginning to end this is an EP of high quality, one that wears its influences loud and proud. It is also a piece of work that marks Sleeptalking as serious contenders in today’s music scene.
Oh Isn’t It Strange? is out on 21st April via Funnel Music.