Californian Rock band Sleepy Sun's sophomore record is a musical experience I hold in high regards. Its peaks echo shivers of the greats, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin and King Crimson vibes produce goosebumps however this is no nostalgia act. Fusing elements of Rock music's broader spectrum, Stoner and Psychedelic Rock vibes dominate the focus with touches of Progressive and Post-Rock coloring an ever organic unraveling of vision through inspiration. Composed of nine tracks its one of those records that commands to be lived in full. Traversing its peaks and valleys, electrified eruptions of ecstatic guitar leads engulf acute atmospheres that then descend and dissipate into sombre strolls of folksy acoustic yearnings and surfing psychedelic ambience. Suspense yearns in the shadows it casts.
Opening with sun soaked melodies to relax the soul, rousing flares of fiery guitar noise break up the harmonica jams and earnest singing, to lead us into tribal jungle jams and choral chants. Its a naturalistic flow that Rigamarro holds over with a soft and dusky bongo led acoustic piece for the eruptions to begin again on Wild Machines. Led on by whistling tunes, unleashed swells of overdrive tonal guitars sludge out a short lived groove that eventually blossoms into a unrestrained force of inspiration as it scales up to a climax. The dynamic is riveting and Ooh Boy and Acid Love tie us down through a shift in tone as we absorb in the anticipation.
With Desert God the record tugs on the heart strings, its careful build through distant rumblings under its timeless melody at front and center let vocalist Rachel Fannan allures us with a soft, serine singing that will soon soar into a roaring of soulful voicing to rumble your belly. Its wholly captivating but far from over. With a flickering percussive rhythm of stick slapping and exotic psychedelic chord reverberations, Open Eyes sways between its entrancing grooves and falling to the soft and comforting breaks, teasing what to come. Eventually it swells up into a dramatic rise, taking both components, elevating and uniting them towards an epic hieght.
Freedom Line brings about some attitude, a sassy baseline purrs with its punchy, binary presence. The withdrawal of guitars gives drummer Brian Tice focus to vibrate a rigid groove that builds its complexity in fractions. We then come to the monumental Sandstorm Woman, a ten minute saga to see the record out with an indulgent high as we descend deep into kaleidoscopic psychedelia. Its colorful construct feels full circle as the return of the harmonica sounds. Its mid tempo pace is challenged by a roaring guitar lead that wails itself into existence. As quick as it came it disappears back into the wash of luminous radiance that is a band in unison.
The song goes on to scale further heights, a remarkable flow of inspired brilliance. This album is gorgeous, its aesthetic has texture, tone and flavor. It captures the spirit of old recordings and feels electric, as if the band were in the room with you. The drum kit sounds especially lived in, the use of effects and reverberations allows the record to ebb and surge. Their performance has a self aware, electric dynamism that the musicians seem to relish within. I can't think of anything bad to say about it other than some tracks are more preferable to others but everything fires on all cylinders and there is much packed in these forty two minuets that you won't be able to forget.
Favorite Tracks: Marina, Desert God, Open Eyes, Sandstorm Woman