I was stuck in traffic the other day and I’ll admit, I was getting a bit angry. I needed something to calm my nerves, so I quickly flicked through my albums on Spotify, looking for something to ooze my traffic jam pain. Maybe jazz or some lofi hip-hop beats. But my thumb stopped on Sleep’s new album, The Sciences, like some divine being told me to halt at that very moment. Usually metal isn’t going to calm me when I’m already as red faced as Barnaby Joyce in a TV interview. But I clicked play, and to my surprise, I was calm within a matter of minutes.
Sleep’s droning grooves and delayed drum crashes had me bobbing my head back and forth like I was one of those teenagers listening to the Smashing Pumpkins in that Simpsons episode from the 90s. Or maybe just a depressed teenager listening to music in general. My head became weighty as it slowly moved from side to side to Sleep’s stoner groans booming from their hauntingly low tuned guitars. The band hadn’t released an album in fifteen years, but The Sciences sound as if they never left. Admittedly, I never listened to the stoner metal heavyweights in 2003, but I’ve come to appreciate the legacy the formed in the early 90s. Six songs and just over fifty minutes of continual, hellish, riffs meld into one hypnotic album. It’s psychedelic and telling from the bong hit that’s recorded at the start of the second track, and by the nugs plastered on the album cover, Sleep are on some other shit.
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