While She Sleeps – So What? (Sleeps Brothers/Spinefarm)
While She Sleeps have been on an upward curve their whole career, but can they keep that trajectory going in a positive direction with their latest album?
Bring Me The Horizon may have vacated their position as modern metal gods and it seems like While She Sleeps are determined to jostle for BMTH’s former position at the top of the pile.
They even borrow a few of Ollie Sykes’ tricks, especially on album closer Gates of Paradise – which features a Happy Song style backing chant.
Alongside fellow countrymen Bury Tomorrow, WSS are riding the crest of their career defining wave that So What? keeps going strong.
With anticipation building thanks to a drip-feed approach to this new record, While She Sleeps have managed to chart the unsteady course between loyalty and experimentation.
And if the songs don’t immediately resonant it’s because they need to be listen to more than once. They need to be aged like a fine wine, not smashed down and forgotten about like a treble vodka down the Newcastle Bigg Market.
Because the things that made them so great on You Are We are carried on here. The riffs still slap you across the face like a 6am winter’s breeze and carry you off into a metal daydream.
Anti-Social can feel disjointed at times as if the flow of the song knocks the rhythm out the bottom at seemingly crucial times, but in reality it’s another breadcrumb in Lawrence Taylor’s trail to the house that rock built.
Any fears of While She Sleeps going rogue are completely dispelled on I’ve Seen It All – an anthem in the You Are We mould that confirms WSS are happy experimenting, but in a way that doesn’t take them too far away from their recipe for success. If cherry Coke was the disaster nobody asked for, this album is vanilla Coke.
Guitarist Mat Walsh promised a heavy album, but a different kind of heavy. And just like everything While She Sleeps have touched in the last few years, he got it bang on.