SLEEP KICKS - THE AFTERDROP
Oslo 4 piece Sleep Kicks have just released an exceptional album that takes the memorable and addictive sound of synth-pop and mixes it with ripples of dark tinges to create an emotional and uplifting indie rock sound. Their debut album ‘The Afterdrop’ was released on March 17th.
Sleep Kicks formed in 2019 and consist of lead vocalist Terje Kleven, Bass-player Stephen Gardener, guitarist Jørn Landbakk and drummer Frode Gundersen. The band released their debut track ‘Hall of Shame’ back in February 2020 and released their Summer EP later that year which included acoustic live versions of Exodus and My Own Demon that appear on the new album.
The 10 track album opens with an instrumental, ‘Reflections’, full of metallic rhythmic patterns & swirling synth lines that perfectly opens the door to the rest of the album. The album features 4 of the band’s earlier singles, ‘Words in Vain’ ‘Neptune’ ‘No Chains’ and ‘Hall of Shame’ that had already caught my attention with their contagious anthemic, indie rock sound, tracks that will go down a storm in music venues round the world.
However.it was some of their previously unreleased tracks that stood out for me. ‘Silencer’ has a sparser, dreamy sound, but shows off the warm, understated vocals of Terje Kleven. This atmospheric beauty manages to leave quite a mark. ‘Exodus-edit’ is a bit more edgy with its picky guitar sound and piercing bass, but moving and uplifting at the same time. ‘Orbiting’ is the standout track for me, it’s the longest track on the album, over five minutes, and not a second is wasted. The track begins with a Peter Hook-esque bass, before the effortless vocals of Kleven once again coming to the fore, imbuing the track with drama and emotion. Driven by rhythmic drumbeats and compelling keys, the unstoppable tides of guitars and synths start to kick in as the track soars to a climax.
The Afterdrop’ is one of those albums that seduces as it unwinds around the listener and I can’t speak more highly of it. Take a listen.