For Fans Of
Oh, Sleeper frontman and key songwriter Micah Kinnard has shown his fan base right from day one that when it comes to weaving a gripping story into your lyrics, he’s damn good at it. After releasing three concept albums on Solid State Records, the band are trying their hand at releasing music independently, the first taste of which comes in the crowd funded release, ‘The Titan EP’. The release marks the first part of a story about a campaign offering artificial upgrades to the human body and mind in exchange for a ‘time-debt.’
The band waste no time kicking things into gear on opening track ‘Naofumi Mitsuhashi,’ a song named after a particularly dedicated indiegogo backer. The track instantly gives off darker vibes than previous releases; even 2011’s ‘Children of Fire‘. Micah‘s screaming is in top form, an improvement upon an already strong voice, helping to push the song to levels that haven’t been seen on the band’s previous releases, leaving a fantastic first impression on the listener.
‘The Pitch‘ picks up where it leaves off, leaving no time to catch your breath before launching into an assault of immense drum beats from Zac Mayfield and crazy lead guitar phrases played at insane speeds. All this frames Micah‘s incredible vocals, which have a strong, but very positive contrast to clean vocalist Shane Blay, and the guest vocals from Dan Casey (ex-Periphery), giving what is possibly the best song on the EP.
‘Death From Above‘ features a guest spot in a different way, with a guitar solo from Falling In Reverse lead guitarist Jacky Vincent. Now, regardless of what your opinion on Falling In reverse may be, Jacky‘s guitar work is a very strong addition to the song, providing some pretty different guitar tones to what you would expect from an Oh, Sleeper song. Without his work, it would actually be quite hard to separate this song from others on the EP, but even the slight difference provided by it is enough to give this song a life of it’s own.
‘Heavy Hands‘ sees Shane Blay really showing us what he’s capable of, with all lead vocals on the track provided by the clean vocalist, and it’s easily the best performance of his career. The range the man has in his voice is absolutely astounding, and something that would make any singer that hears him at his best green with envy.
Final track, ‘The Rise,’ is a call to revolution, revolving around Micah‘s electrifying vocal refrain, “If you can hear this you are the resistance!,” finding the perfect balance between sections of quiet and calm, and sections where the only accurate description is ‘all hell breaks loose.’ The track is gripping, painting a picture of an uprising, and leaving the listener wanting more, a fitting end to the first part of the story.
‘The Titan EP’ is Oh, Sleeper’s best release yet, moving from strength to strength, and painting an incredible, albeit dark, picture of the fictitious ‘Titan Campaign’ along the way. Oh, Sleeper have proven that not only can they work well without a label behind them, but they can do even better. One can only be excited at the potential of the band for future independent releases.
- Naofumi Mitsuhashi
- The Pitch
- Death From Above
- Heavy Hands
- The Rise