The five piece Seattle based outfit Good Sleep make cool and lucid pop music in the vein of bands like The Clientele and Real Estate. Bringing out these soft, sunny and harmonious tunes are guitarist and vocalist Ethan River Cohen, bassist Sam Fair, guitarist Julian Tennyson, keyboardist, saxophonist, and vocalist Claire Widman, and drummer Lucas Witte. Their debut EP, cleverly titled Good Morning EP sounds a lot like the lo-budget pop rock that has been making its way out of the back rooms of and bedrooms of youngsters all across the country and has for the past few years become a staple of the younger cool kid DIY generation.
When I was a kid I liked coloring in coloring books. I couldn’t draw to save my life but I could color pretty decently. I stayed inside the lines for the most part and was able to make some passibly artistic works that my mother was nice enough to showcase on side of the refrigerator, because the front was reserved for coupons and magnets in the shapes of different states embossed with the states motto. Anyways then one day at school I noticed how this one girl was really good at coloring. All her lines went in the same direction and she outlined things and knew what colors complemented each other. I was both jealous and in awe of this girl.
What I’m getting at here, and don’t get me wrong I am a big fan of neophyte pop bands like Beach House, Real Estate, et. al (and trust me there are a lot) but I just can’t help but remember that girl who was really good at coloring in pre-drawn shapes. Because to me this hazy California beach pop is either good or its okay. Nothing new is happening in this genre and nothing new ever will.
Now that I’ve gone off on a tangent and gotten myself all worked up let’s talk about Good Morning EP. For all intents and purposes their opening track, the slow moving and melodicly hazey feeling “Grow” with its flitters of finger picked guitar scales sound like they could have been drawn from the very same playbook Real Estate uses, perhaps even more so on the mellow soft synth vibes and humming snares on the follow-up “Sidewalk.”
Next up “Peaches” is a softly brooding love song ballad that fits perfectly in the lines. On “Wash” we get the same slow paced guitar stylings but we hear from Claire Widman whose rich vocals provide a moment of respite on this record.
Now that I’ve probably come off sounding like a jerk for most of this review I’m gonna pull a record scratch and tell you just why you should listen to Good Morning by Good Sleep. You should listen to it because it’s a good record, clinically speaking its members all very talented, knowing not only how to play their instruments well but how to play them well together.
Like I said earlier there are a million or so bands that play this light and airy declassified surf pop, but there are only so many bands that are lucky enough to be plucked out of the fray and put on the pedestal. It doesn’t mean they’re any better, it just means they have better luck.
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