Sleep Dealer = Sinai Vessel + Pianos Become the Teeth
It’s always nice to hear from bands from Southern Utah—even nicer when they bring back the nostalgia of early 2000s emo (à la Brand New and The Spill Canvas)—like St. George–based Sleep Dealer do. Please, Reconnect… is a short EP that delivers just enough of that nostalgia to pique my interest as a unique voice to break through the local music scene. Each of the songs on the EP seems to have been built behind a single guitar riff that delicately evolves into something bigger. “Clocktown Brewing Company” starts off as a guitar line that gradually and satifyingly evolves into a full band piece, complete with vocalist/guitarist Patrick Swansborough‘s controlled screams. Swansborough’s voice never seems strained or out of place, despite the fact that the band uses minimal distortions, and his singing voice is melodic and clean, complementing the guitar in each song.
While Sleep Dealer seem to lack some of the abrasion and aggression of some popular emo acts, their softer, building approach serves to their benefit. The guitar riffs serve as the backbone of each song and are highlighted constantly throughout each piece. “The World That Never Was (Ian’s Song)” is the most melodic track on Please, Reconnect… and the stylistic choice of harmonizing both singing and screaming voices on top of each other in the chorus is effective in conveying the morose sweetness of the lyrics. As an Elder Scrolls fan, I’m automatically intrigued by “M’aiq the Liar” and its abrupt break from the gentle intro of “L+R+A+Start,” which bears an equally nerdy namesake. “M’aiq the Liar” has the dichotomy of easily being the most upbeat song on Please, Reconnect… while also containing the most consistent screaming.
For a first effort, there are a lot of really solid elements in Please, Reconnect… and the emotion behind the music is very present throughout the EP. The only criticism I would have for this EP is that there are some layered elements (such as vocals) that don’t exactly line up in every track the same way, but even then, there is a certain charm in the raw emotion and small imperfections, and I’m excited to see what Sleep Dealer have to offer in the future. –Ali Shimkus