While She Sleeps – “Sleeps Society” (Spinefarm)
Battle Helm Rating
Winners of the Best British Newcomer award at the Kerrang! Awards 2012 and well known in metalcore circles thanks to their festival appearances across the globe from the Vans Warped Tour in America and Canada to Soundwave in Australia and Rock Am Ring in Germany, as well as Sonisphere in the UK, While She Sleeps are, in my opinion, closer to being emocore despite their aggressive moments, with tons of emotion in their music complete with plenty of melancholic touches, right down to their name being derived from a news article about a woman murdering her husband in his sleep. “Sleeps Society” is the band’s 5th release and reflects their seasoned experience, delivered through an internationally honed style resplendent with slick beats and samples and rounded off by a big ‘Sleeps’ production sound, although what really makes this album tick are the massive hooks and catches in the music explaining the band’s worldwide popularity! If you had any doubts, then ‘You Are All You Need’ amply demonstrates this through the brutality of its chopping beats and raw screamo beautifully contrasted by some truly irresistible guitar melodies that just spiral around your mind as a myriad of incredible sounds from bass slapping to emo harmonies and ambient keys brings on a massive endorphin release – truly amazing. Joined by Simon Neil (Biffy Clyro) on ‘Nervous’, the quiet emo piano intro is sharpy contrasted by a power riff screamo mix of emo pop vocal harmonies going straight to the heart and as the styles alternate while being added to and slightly varied each time, you understand why the music of While She Sleeps moves people wherever they are, be it on a train, at home, in a festival arena or at a sold-out 2019 Brixton Academy show. Pumping in the positive vibes through a confluence of shimmering melodies and triple vocal harmonies with hard kick beats and stamping riffs touched off by thoughtful samples on ‘Know Your Worth (Somebody)’, the effect is undeniable in its uplift as it resonates through your body and drowns you in nothing but love – such is the power of While She Sleeps on this winning release. And just in case you’re wondering, ‘DN3 3HT’ is ‘THE END’ spelt backwards, although I pity the people whose postcode this is ha ha!