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Rough Mix Demo

Sleepless - Rough Mix Demo ©2000 Self-Released
1. Sands Of Time
2. Solitude
3. Change
4. Strings
5. Winds Blow Higher
6. Lying In Wait
7. Rain
8. Do You Remember

Sleepless’ most recent demo is yet another prime example of the sheer and genuine sense of purgation a listener can discern from discovering an entirely original, yet criminally underrated band. Displaying a very diverse and strange sound, this Israeli duo plays a rather dreamy mixture of gothic rock, jazz, progressive rock, and ethereal soundscapes that can be likened to that of the sadly defunct Lycia. All of the tracks included within this forty-plus minute demo, though suffering a little from the appropriately demo quality production, are prime examples of composition of the utmost professionalism. The opening number “Sands of Time” is an ethereal, dreamy song replete with some occasional “Beatles-esque” moments. The groovy following song, “Solitude”, demonstrates experimentation of the most professional degree, even throwing horns into the mix. The relaxing “Wind Blows Higher” and the stirring “Lying In Wait” are also very stunning.

The vocals consist of David Bendayan’s soft, melodic, melancholic singing and Maor Applebaum’s harsh, wretched whispering and growling (another comparison to the aforementioned Lycia). Lyrically, Sleepless dwells on pretty straightforward topics with surprisingly very little or no blunders. Perhaps the only downside to this demo is that the songs contain a rather echoing and expansive atmosphere that is done a major disservice as a result of the demo-quality production. However, for what amounts to a demo, this is some good stuff. I am interested to hear what Sleepless will offer next, as this demo has left me with lasting impressions.

Review by Alec A. Head

Review date: 04/2001

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Winds Blow Higher

Sleepless - Winds Blow Higher ©2001 The End Records
1. Lying In Wait
2. Winds Blow Higher
3. Sands Of Time
4. Solitude
5. Change
6. Strings
7. Rain (instrumental)
8. Moments
9. Do You Remember?

So this is metal's version of "dreampop" music with a slight Slowdive "shoegazer" feel. Israel's Sleepless has quite the impressive debut here with Winds Blow Higher, a wonderful journey through moods, atmospheres and delicate songwriting. The Sleepless duo is made up of two musicians who cover a lot of territory in instrumenation: guitar, piano, synths, fretless bass, weird noises and effects. Other musicians offer help with saxophone, classical guitars and vocals. In short, this creates a lush, vibrant and pensive sound that is often found in the best of the Projekt Records' roster. The production allows for a warm, open sound, giving each of the instruments space to breathe as well as echo and create the dreampop vibe. Both members of Sleepless provide vocals and act as polar opposites but to a great degree of success. The best thing about Winds Blow Higher is that it only gets better as the CD progresses. "Change", "Strings" and the instrumental "Rain" all work together as a seamless, transient journey. The band has a great sense of dynamics and the ability to weave in a nearly magical feeling to their music. Fans of Slowdive, Lycia, Canaan, Judgement of Paris and other brooding, mystical bands should most definitely rush out to find this disc. In a nutshell, wonderfully impressive.

Review by John Chedsey

Review date: 11/2001

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