Embrace

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Heather Phares
It's only fitting that bluesy psych wanderers Sleepy Sun are based in San Francisco. Even if many of their most immediate inspirations aren't from the City by the Bay, the fragile, folky moments and acid rock bluster on their debut album, Embrace, embody the vibe associated with San Francisco since the '60s. It also makes perfect sense that Embrace, which the band self-released in 2008, was picked up for wider distribution by ATP, the boutique label of the experimental music festival All Tomorrow's Parties. The imprint is also home to Bardo Pond, to whom Sleepy Sun bear a striking resemblance, especially on "Sleepy Son," where bubbling wah-wah guitars, interstellar ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Heather Phares
It's only fitting that bluesy psych wanderers Sleepy Sun are based in San Francisco. Even if many of their most immediate inspirations aren't from the City by the Bay, the fragile, folky moments and acid rock bluster on their debut album, Embrace, embody the vibe associated with San Francisco since the '60s. It also makes perfect sense that Embrace, which the band self-released in 2008, was picked up for wider distribution by ATP, the boutique label of the experimental music festival All Tomorrow's Parties. The imprint is also home to Bardo Pond, to whom Sleepy Sun bear a striking resemblance, especially on "Sleepy Son," where bubbling wah-wah guitars, interstellar guitar feedback, and harmonicas surround Rachael Williams' hypnotically sexy vocals. Yet Sleepy Sun never feel overly indebted to any of their influences, and over the course of Embrace, they carve out their own niche within the realm of trippy, expansive music. The bold opening track, "New Age," moves from lumbering fuzz bass and hazy harmonies to furious instrumental passages that are just as gripping as the parts with vocals; while it's all free-flowing and organic, Sleepy Sun have a slightly more structured approach than some of their contemporaries, and an instinctive feel for when to unleash their lysergic onslaughts and when to pull back and concentrate on melodies instead. There's a good mix of fire and serenity throughout Embrace, from the way "Snow Goddess" builds from a slinky groove to an ecstatic crescendo, to the way "Lord"'s warm piano balladry and "Red/Black"'s smoldering blues lament complement each other perfectly. Sleepy Sun's balancing instincts could make Embrace feel a little safe if the album wasn't so wide-ranging: along with the expected acid-tinged excursions, the band also delves into witchy mysticism on the excellent "Golden Artifact" and closes with the sweet, simple "Duet with the Northern Sky," which shows off Bret Constantino and Williams' vocals at their finest. At times, Embrace can get a little too droning and repetitive, but it's a confident and promising debut.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/7/2009
  • Label: Atp Recordings
  • UPC: 666017202020
  • Catalog Number: 33

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 New Age (7:25)
  2. 2 Lord (5:39)
  3. 3 Red/Black (2:11)
  4. 4 Sleepy Son (7:24)
  5. 5 Golden Artifact (3:42)
  6. 6 White Dove (9:23)
  7. 7 Snow Goddess (5:38)
  8. 8 Duet with the Northern Sky (2:58)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Sleepy Sun Primary Artist
Jack Allen Bass Guitar
Wardell Williams Vocals
Rachael Williams Vocals, Dancer
Matt Holliman Guitar
Evan Reiss Guitar
Brian Tice Drums
Brett Constantino Harmonica, Vocals
Technical Credits
Colin Stewart Audio Production
Steve Quenell Cover Art
Stuart McKillop Mastering
Sleepy Sun Composer
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