While Giants Sleep

While Giants Sleep EP

Written by: TL on 19/11/2011 16:26:07

While I'm at it with bands that are yet somewhat obscure, let's also talk a little about While Giants Sleep, a young quintet from Sweden, whose self-titled debut EP also reached our inbox for consideration lately. On it, these guys marry an angsty - some would say emo - youthful (slightly faux-British, it almost sounds like Brian Molko for a second) vocal, to instrumental work in the veins of a number of bands from American cinematic post-hardcore and post-rock, such as My Epic, Moving Mountains and As Cities burn. Of course, this being an early release for the band, production values are rather minimalistic, and hence they don't quite manage as full a sound as either of those, but still it seems clear that their inspirations are found in that direction.

Being from up here in the cold north, it comes as no surprise that While Giants Sleep's personal twist on the sound is to give it an almost invariably bleak, cold atmosphere that pervades every song on the EP. There are som frustrated breaks littered here and there, but mostly, focus is on the pained, slightly distorted vocals, crooning away on top of contradictory riffage that seems to almost celebrate a feeling of melancholia. There's a bit of strength and hope in the spoken word passage that concludes opener "Romulus" (I call it opener, because the instrumental intro "Remus" doesn't really make much of an impression), but mostly there's a feeling of quiet desperation casting a shadow over any feeling of positivity.

Songs like "Romulus", "Celeste" and "Wyatt Earp" - the latter two showcasing some decently catchy refrains - show that WGS have already found some good building blocks to work with in their band, leaving only the slightly less impressive "Lost Monarch" as the sole reason that their EP shouldn't reward any repeat listens you might give it. Still, there's plenty to work with in terms of composition and production, because things can quickly feel a bit samey when the sound is so consistently heavy-hearted, and were this a full length, I suspect the listener would tire from lacking variety before its end. This is, as far as I know at least, the band's very first EP, and it's a pretty decent one at that. Give them some more time and resources to bolster their sound, and I think things could quickly come to sound even better, because the sense for drama and solid refrains seems to be there for certain.

Download: Celeste, Wyatt Earp
For The Fans Of: My Epic, As Cities Burn, Moving Mountains
Listen: facebook.com/whilegiantssleep

Release Date 12.07.2011
Self-released

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