I became a huge fan of The Sleeping after hearing their album Questions and Answers, but the loss of their guitarist following that album, as well as a continuation of some poor production that seemed to plague the band throughout their career (which was a huge shame) eventually led to me becoming disheartened and disinterested in the band and I barely even noticed when they called it a day.
Enter Night Verses, singer Douglas Robinsons 'new' band with their debut EP Out of the Skywhich is free to download from their website. But what do they have to offer? Are they just The Sleeping MK II? Is Robinson just some one trick pony?
The answer is yes, and no.
Obviously with a vocal as unique as Robinsons it becomes nearly impossible not to compare Night Verses with his previous band but there's something different here, a sense that vocally perhaps he feels more able to experiment between his emo-friendly sung vocal and a raspy shout that was barely audible throughout The Sleeping at times creating some fantastic vocal overdubs throughout the EP.
Musically the band are a strange one to pin down. Opener From The Shadows Where I'm Lowstarts with an almost electronica feel to it before erupting into a catchy emo-rock guitar riff but just as you think the band might be emo-lite they pluck out from thin air a phenomenal guitar riff in the bridge and some empowered howling that will regardless of genre get every alternative music fan nodding along in satisfaction. Other stand out track Be Happy With Yourself, I'm Staying Here In Hell once again uses an electronic element throughout it with guitar work reminiscent of the brilliant Kaddisfly (RIP) before erupting into a brilliant heavy chorus with another fantastic guitar riff. And to top it off this song has hand claps, and what song with hand claps is really bad?
So, Night Verses, the new The Sleeping? Not really, no. If we're going to compare, then Night Verses are better. The Sleeping often felt like they were fighting to try and not be in the scene that they were lumped into. Night Verses while vocally obviously have similarities, are an extremely intelligent band with inventive guitars that explore face pounding riffs and erethral melodies that bands like Pink Floyd would probably be proud of. To top this off they have a rhythm section to actually die for and you can see why Robinson chose not to take a break from music and put his faith in this band.
Night Verses; a rock band? An experimental band? An alternative band? Who cares...they are freaking good and if this EP isn't top of every magazines best free releases list for 2012 then I am going to boycott journalism full stop.
4 / 5