Weed obsessed stoner rock legends Sleep release their first album since Dopesmoker on 4/20 as a nod to the code-term in cannabis culture and day of celebratory toking. 'The Sciences' feature six tracks of relentless, stoned and heavy psychedelic metal from chess master Al Cisneros also of Om, High on Fire axe wielder Matt Pike and Neurosis stickman Jason Roeder.
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Sleep have been absent from our lives for an incredibly long time -- 2003, at the latest, as it was when the real, good and true version of 'Dopesmoker' came out -- and may be surprised to learn that things have changed. People still love weed, I'll give them that, but like, this is 2018; no one's getting high and listening to stoner metal now that podcasts exist. Determined to fit into a world of glorified audiobooks and nerds chatting for three hours about the video games they played that week, they've come back with 'The Sciences', which is effectively exactly what you would expect from the band Sleep, who like weed, after some time spent being a slightly chiller doom band called Om.
Wah wah woaw go the guitars, and with the tiniest hint of 'Interstellar' electronics on the opening track, they go full blast into their weighty slabs of stoner. Since they've basically just been sitting atop a mountain of interchangeable riffs for fifteen plus years, the trio sound free as heck and high as kites, just letting the fuzzing guitars autopilot until one of them needs to solo -- actually, maybe this is the biggest offender, in our day and age, as leagues of psych rock bands have basically copied the Sabbath protocol verbatim and made the homage obsolete.
Still, Sleep do what they do so well, a veteran band of hard, doomy rock music; if heavy metal with super clean vocals and a lot of hair is your thing, Sleep are still doing it to perfection. The fact that this is easier to pick up and play than full-time commitment 'Dopesmoker' should be welcome in a day and age when I personally can't concentrate on anything for two seconds. For a band that were playing dated music back in the day, Sleep probably don't care that their shelf life is probably up -- they're high, they're heavy, and they don't want any more bears.
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