Sleepy Sun – Maui Tears


Review by Paul Broome

Dine Alone

Release Date: 17 March 2014

And so California’s Sleepy Sun arrive at album number four, with a renewed confidence in their stride and perhaps a sense that this is the one where they need to stretch themselves, circle their arms around a slightly bigger audience, take a step forward. There’s not so much of the dissociated freak out or garage rock on this album, and a couple of times things venture far too close a Black Crowesian country rock realm – especially on second track ‘Words’ – but hopefully this is just a hangover from the re-gathering exercise that was album number three, the disappointing Spine Hits (which followed a split and reformation of the ranks).

The fact that the formulaic ‘Words’ is followed by ‘Everywhere Waltz’ – a twisted dark 3:4 amble of a song, which arrives just in time to restore faith and sounds not unlike the heavier end of the My Morning Jacket oeuvre – seems to be hinting at such a thing, and the title track which closes the album is a sprawling 10 minute psych rock anthem that both stirs and nurtures the soul.

In between there are highs and lows; tellingly the best moments are when the band does what they did best on the first two albums: just let it rip (opener ‘The Lane’ for example, which captures that whole chilled-yet-raging BRMC mood they do so well). The not so good points are the times when they seem to be trying to force and form their craft into some of the frameworks of their more folk-orientated contemporaries. There’s still more than enough here to recommend this album, but I’m hoping that if any of these tracks give an indication of future direction then it’s ‘Maui Tears’ and not ‘Words’.

Keep your faith in the Psych – step away from the Country.

Sleepy Sun – Maui Tears7 out of 10

Track Listing:

  1. The Lane
  2. Words
  3. Everywhere Waltz
  4. Outside
  5. 11:32
  6. Theilbar
  7. Slowdown
  8. Galaxy Punk
  9. Maui Tears