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OVERFLOW Aug 22, 2014 A selection of new works by Scott Polach which draws on the history of pluviculture, or, attempts to induce rain artificially. Opening includes a collaborative performance piece from Keenan Hartsten entitled, "Very cool, and refreshing?". 85 other events on Friday, August 22
 
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How one case study could potentially transform City Heights
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Former customs agent got more than seven years for smuggling drugs and people into the U.S., but mysterious events are raising questions about the government’s prosecution
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Spooky hell, urine baptisms and other memories exorcised by the Broadway play
Film
Joe Swanberg’s new independent film starring Anna Kendrick leads our rundown of movies screening around town
Editorial
Formal complaint against the Probation Department shows how far local juvenile-detention practices are out of the mainstream

 

 
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Wednesday, Dec 05, 2012

Sleep Lady is all post-rock, no jock

Locals get sprawling and cinematic on new album

By Peter Holslin

Sleep Lady So Long Lonely Ghost (self-released)

Post-rock bands are the jocks of the indie-music world. With their extra-long band names and even longer songs, they bludgeon the listener with awesomeness and artistry (and political awareness, in the case of Godspeed You! Black Emperor). Line up next to these guys and your puny garage band can’t help but feel inferior.

But Sleep Lady—who’ll play at Soda Bar on Saturday, Dec. 8—don’t engage in the usual post-rock pissing match. While their songs can stretch as long as nine minutes and often incorporate sudden, surprising shifts, they keep the pretense to a minimum.

In fact, on their new album, So Long Lonely Ghostthe local quintet display a sense of humor about their awesome sound. Consider “These Fucking Worms,” the album’s sprawling closer: That title could be an angry God venting frustration over the failings of mankind, or it could be a dad muttering as he tends his backyard garden.

To be sure, the album—the band’s second—has all the multi-part song structures and textured riffs a post-rocker could ask for. When it comes to guitar interplay, axe-men Mike Hayden and Mario Quintero make a formidable pair. But it’s also restrained, introspective and a bit whimsical, thanks in part to Kristy Hayden’s twinkly keyboards and cooing vocals.

That contrast yields rich results on the dreamlike “I Wanted to Be a Penguin Forever.” Guided by Sarah Quintero’s crunchy bass and Tony Dixon’s measured drums, the mostly instrumental track opens with a descending refrain and gradually erupts with a feverish burst of guitars and keyboards, only to end on a quiet note. The song captures a potent mix of wonder and dread, suggestive of a child’s-eye view.

Indeed, this isn’t jock-y music. It’s more laid-back and cooperative. Sleep Lady comprises two married couples—Mike and Kristy, Mario and Sarah— and their conviviality shows through in the band’s intricate, clean style. Each part plays a key role; the result is a swooping, cinematic whole. 


Email peterh@sdcitybeat.com or follow him on Twitter at @peterholslin.




 
 
 
 
 
 
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