‘Big Sleeper’ could not be a more flagrant piece of false advertising; from the misleading title to the neon soaked artwork and 80s style font. Masquerading as a summery synth-pop soiree, what’s truly lurking behind the cover of InTechnicolour‘s latest effort is a beast of mammoth proportions.
The band are a Brighton based supergroup of sorts, sporting members of Delta Sleep, LUO, and The Physics House Band. While there may be slight nods to these projects scattered throughout the album, there’s a precise and cohesive vision that’s genuinely rare to find in a debut nowadays. That vision is, admittedly, blurred in the stoner/doom rock haze that the band specialise in, but that’s kind of the point.
First off, tone is everything here. The pummelling rhythms and groove laden riffs are thicker than a brick wall, and twice as chunky. Clear influence is taken from genre stalwarts Soundgarden and Clutch, while there’s definitely a debt owed to Sleep. However, if there’s one band owed a mention above all others, it’s Mastodon. The seamless coalescence of stoner, doom, and sludge rock motifs into one dynamic sound has been majorly popularised by the group over the past two decades.
What’s impressive about InTechnicolour is the dynamic range of vocalist Tobie Anderson, who manages to do on his own what Mastodon require three members to pull off. His performance on album highlight ‘Shaker’ and the magnificent ‘Gallon Man’ are as diverse as they are exceptional, the crescendo on the latter devolving into a post-rock inspired deluge of blues-grunge mania.
Never stagnating, the album sonically expands one song after another. Firstly, through the more digestible singles ‘Under The Sun’ and the title-track, before delving into more layered affairs, such as ‘Doomer’ and ‘Slow Moth’. The further you traverse, the more rewarding the journey becomes. All with the possible exception of ‘Lend Me A Crushed Ear’, which feels a little anti-establishment 101, but there’s still an undeniable retro charm to it.
‘Big Sleeper’ is a collection of earth stomping, wall shaking anthems that deserve to be performed in the biggest venues possible. With such a confident and genuinely impressive debut, it’s surely just a matter of time before InTechnicolour achieve just that.
Lover of choons, flums, bukes and such. I like making music. I like writing about music. I like burgers and emo-trap. Also suffer from a slight case of knowitallism. I wish every song had a breakdown.