Old Habits EP is the debut project from the dream-pop outfit Sleep Shift. The EP is a rollercoaster of a listen. It balances its dream and psychedelic leanings with straightforward rock n’ roll, making for comforting lows and intense highs. Overall, Old Habits is an electrifying project.
Old Habits' production was a homegrown endeavor, being recorded, mixed and mastered by Sleep Shift member, Perry Wesley, on a mobile pro tools setup. Its DIY nature gives it a lo-fi tinge, but overall, the EP’s production is impressive. The vocals are mixed beautifully, and putting the lead guitar front and center at certain moments is impactful.
Old Habits starts with “Intro,” a song that I wish was a better introduction to the band. It’s one speed throughout and doesn’t highlight the guitar or lead singer LouRae Stacy’s vocals like the rest of the album. Things really get going with “Mundane Days.” The song has a chill nature that creates a false sense of security. When the first chorus drops in, screeching guitars and heavily distorted bass disrupt the calm, in a good way. The tune “Molly” is the dreamiest of the bunch. It does not reach the climax that “Mundane Days” reaches, but its high points feature that signature in your face electric guitar.
The closing song “Mars” is the climax for the EP as a whole. It starts subdued, but by the end, the whole band is ripping it. Stacy’s wailing lead vocals sit alongside scorching guitar leads and punchy bass riffs. It’s the perfect album closer because you don’t want it to end.
But it does end. And, actually, that’s okay because I can start the EP over again. And again. Old Habits is an exciting dream-pop project that has me looking forward to what Sleep Shift releases next.
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