What artist or group can you name that records mastered music in only one take? It's a tough one, since even the most improvisational musicians have had their sound tweaked and tempered at some point or another. But with Matt Kivel's new collective, Sleeping Bags, it's just the opposite. To garner the unwavering, raw, and ragged mountain of sound demonstrated on "Pehr," the band could accept nothing more, and nothing less, than complete spontaneity.
Described as lush "melodic fuzz" or speaker burn, the Long Beach collective, which brings together Matt and Jesse Kivel of Princeton and Kisses, Abe Burns of Gentle Hands, and Mark Nieto of COMBAT, are artists of the drone. Creating sonic walls of thrash, crash, and boom, Sleeping Bags delves into territory once explored by Bowie during the Berlin era, Neu!, and The Velvet Underground, and finds strange, ambient bliss. Blending progressional horizontal riffs with layered sheaths of shifting guitars and drums, the song's seven minutes and 37 seconds listen like a sculptural score of living noise. Breathing and bending within itself, the track is an avant-garde jam that reaches serenity.
While the rest of Sleeping Bags' self-titled debut LP meshes improv with studio time, it's "Pehr" that takes listeners on the purest, most unadulterated ride through "the live."
SLEEPING BAGS IS OUT SEPTEMBER 13. TO PRE-ORDER THE ALBUM, VISIT THE BAND'S BANDCAMP.