Australia has given us a number of notable breakthrough bands in recent years, and it’s time for Adelaide-based melodic hardcore outfit Sleep Talk to show us what they’ve got with their debut full-length, ‘Everything In Colour’.
We’re immediately met with Jacob Clement‘s bawling, impassioned vocal delivery in ‘Lauritzen’. Musically this hits a sweet spot between melodic post-hardcore and a more visceral straight-down-the-line approach, and the band seem to favour being short, direct, and straight to the point; only a few songs on this album get past the 3 minute mark.
They’re adept at mixing things up too, with clean vocals being offered from both guitarist Lewis Tito and bassist Josh Healey. Songs like ‘The Sun’ and ‘Slowfade’ see notable uses of cleaner aspects, and an almost ambient section in the former track with a The Cure-esque guitar tone; their grasp of light and shade is certainly commendable for a debut album.
‘If I Die’ is probably the strongest out of the slower songs being offered here. With a very vulnerable character to the verses, and a strong explosion of sound near the end, this song is certainly a highlight. ‘Shadow’ offers a nice interlude to divide the album up, this time with a crooned vocal delivery.
Just in case you were thinking that the album may veer into shoegaze territory, the hulky intro of ‘Allergic To The World’ brings forth a lot of weight, and ‘The New Year’ has a real sense of urgency, reminding us that this lot can offer a punch. There’s also a clear medium of catharsis here, with the band’s title-song ‘Sleep Talk’ containing lyrics like “If you find my body, don’t resuscitate me.”
‘Kill’ has a memorable “Dark thoughts in the night, screaming ‘kill'” hook, with some noticeable anguish in Clement‘s screams all the way through, and the slower sections help to end the album on a grand and fraught note.
As much as the band’s approach of not wanting to drag songs on is commendable, sometimes you feel some songs end a little abruptly, and there could be a little more weight and character behind the clean vocals at times, but all in all, there’s an awful lot of promise here.
Sleep Talk show plenty of depth on ‘Everything In Colour’, avoiding the linear trappings of a lot of hardcore bands, and they’ve got the potential take their sound to greater heights on their next release.