VENUE: The Gov, Adelaide, South Australia, 6th April 2017.
Sydney’s post-rock band Sleepmakeswaves are currently touring Australia launching their new album ‘Made of Breath Only’. They initially released 2 singles... ‘Midnight Sun’ and ‘Tundra’ as previews to the album which was finally released on March 24th 2017.
Sleepmakeswaves first formed in 2006 and have toured extensively in UK, Europe, USA, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, gathering a strong fan-base along the way. They are a unique band, in that their music contains no vocals, relying solely on generating emotions, moods and feelings with their music. Like the ocean, their music contains peaks and troughs. It can be quiet and tranquil and it can also be as turbulent as a violent storm. They cleverly intermix music styles, creating soundscapes that are varied, layered and emotive.
They opened their Adelaide show with ‘To You They Are Birds, To Me They Are Voices In The Forest’ from their first full-length album ‘And So We Destroyed Everything’ which was released in 2011. They performed tracks from all their albums, focusing in particular on their previous album ‘Love Of Cartography’. But it was the new work that grabbed my attention the most. They played four tracks from ‘Made of Breath Only’, starting with ‘Tundra’, the new single which has been getting lots of airplay on our national radio station, Triple J, and is my personal favourite.
‘Tundra’ is a mix of delicate, almost orchestral segments, morphed with heavier bursts of post-rock guitar riffs. It begins as four basic chords, quickly repeated over & over. Layers of complexity are cleverly introduced before running full bore into thunderous, solid guitar riffs. ‘Tundra’ then returns to layering the original theme as more versions begin to loop around and grow in intensity. The track takes you on a satisfying journey that develops using all the ingredients that post-rock offers. The final third of the track begins with a sudden return to the delicacy of the opening, grabbing your attention, and then slowly seduces you into a wonderous dreamscape that leaves you feeling a little sad when it is over. I feel that ‘Tundra’ displays a real maturity and growth in style for the band.
When asked by Veronica and Lewis on Triple J radio, how Sleepmakeswaves come up with titles for their tracks, guitarist Otto replied that the band uses a list of post-rock sounding phrases as inspiration. As the band is purely instrumental, with no lyrics from which to draw track titles, I also wondered how they came up with their often-complex titles.
A dedicated crowd at The Gov enjoyed a generous set from Sleepmakeswaves, with some loyal fans at the front giving them lots of adoring feedback.
Sleepmakeswaves were well supported by The Unset and the very popular and charismatic Caligula’s Horse from Brisbane. The final show of the current album-launch Australian tour is 8th April in Brisbane. In May, Sleepmakeswaves will be supporting The Devon Townsend Project on their tour of Australia and New Zealand, so check them out if you can. Band Members Alex Wilson - bass & keys, Otto Wicks-Green - guitar, Daniel Oreskovic - guitar, Tim Adderley – Drums
Article and Images by Deb Kloeden