Sleeper Radio unveil comp that culls their collective lo-fi loves
Boston’s Sleeper Radio has a lot to answer for. Firstly they play the best in the ever expanding DIY/indie scene, and if you haven’t heard their live shows SHAME! Secondly they’ve just released the Sleeper 1 compilation and, I’m sure I’m not the only one, it’s all I’m playing. “But how good can a comp be?” I can hear you think (I’m not really like Professor X, but in this case I am). That’s easy true believer. It consist of twenty seven track. Yes I did say TWENTY SEVEN tracks. Each track is different from the one that proceeds and follows it. The music contained is straight up lo-fi jams, woozy pop songs, and introverted strum-a-thons and full on ear blistering rockers. What’s not to love, yeah?
Vundabar kick things off with an idea of how the Ren and Stimpy theme tune could have sounded, if it had been recorded by some kids form Philli. Current live sensations HINDS show that they can also deliver in the studio. Chugging guitar riffs duke it out with melodic melodies while Carlotta Cosials and Ana Garcia Perrote’s vocals act as mediators. Du Vide slow things down an make us do a bit of soul searching before the next maelstrom of guitars and drums starts up. Later the Orielles pop up and remind us why they’re slowly become our new favourite band before Midriffs suckpunch and pummel us into submission with a hi-energy lo-fi thrash out.
The standout tracks however are by Boston native Jake Rollins and London based Zooz. Regular readers will know that these are favourites of everyone at thisyearinmusic and it can only be a matter of time before they put out a split release, or form a supergroup Zooz Rollins. Rollins’ first track LSD follows on from this month’s Figure it Out. Its loud, brash and incredibly playable. His second song Bed Bugs (Thank You Bay State) is more of a diretribe/short story set to music. The music is lo-fi, sparse and jaunty that show’s another, hitherto unseen, side to his song writing. Zooz’s offering is last year’s fantastic Surf in the Storm. This slice of slacker surf pop sounds more relevant now than it did originally.
The comps real power comes from its timelessness. Any one of its twenty seven tracks could have been released anywhere in the last thirty years. At times it feels like this is a lost mixtape that was found in a junkshop or car boot lodged in a tape deck. The new owner of the tape deck decided to play it before wiping it. When it was played it unveiled eighty minutes eclectic indie/guitar pop, a-la the original Cambodian Rock compilation. However all the tracks were culled from current bands, but its fun to dream right?