Sleep Good Plays Well

Sometimes you can just tell you’re going to like a band. A song starts with just the right combination of sounds and it feels unique yet totally familiar. If it came on a party you’d seek out the iPod, just in the hope of remembering the name. It’s bands like this that make writing about music easy. While looking for a new Austin band to cover, I stumbled on one such band: Sleep Good.

The moment I put on their newest album Skyclimber, I was hooked. The opening song, “Hey Man,” begins with a bouncy bass line, some rim clicks, and a ukulele. The song feels like it could turn cheesy at any time; the wrong combination of lyrics, vocals, or chorus could veer into Jack Johnson territory. But the song actually grows on you. Every time I listen to it, it seems more substantial, more satisfying. That’s a hard thing for a pop song to do.

And that’s what I really like about Sleep Good: they straddle perilously atop genre tropes without ever succumbing to them. They are catchy without being light, lo-fi accessible without being sloppy, wide eyed and fun loving with an emotional core. It’s a band you want you to see not in a dark rock club or a wide festival green, but in your living room sharing some beers while they practice some new material. Songs like “Water Voices” and “Friends” feel like the kind of songs my high school friends and I were always trying to write on breezy spring days. Even the songs that don’t have lyrics feel relatable; it took me a few listens to realize the dreamy “Paper Bird” was all oohs and aahs.

Bottom line is this band is really cool. They’re even selling Skyclimber on vinyl and cassette. Cassette! You can stream or download their entire catalogue here or just see them at Cheer Up Charlie’s tonight.