Grey Gordon - Sleepless
Record Label: Self-released
Release Date: Aug. 12, 2012
Well here's something unexpected. Sleepless is the debut LP from Indiana's Grey Gordon. The disc opens with the buzzing and bright "Fallings," a swerving slice of self-defeat that is painstakingly honest and skillfully written. "Successor" follows "Fallings," and its a warm and engaging effort. There's a slight bent towards jangle-pop and heartland rock and it's a veneer that Gordon wears well.
The disc's best effort is the intimate "Lost Cause," an amiable and airy effort that draws its energy from Gordon's subtle vocals and an inspired acoustic guitar. "Firestorm (Earth Crisis)," which Gordon released back in May is an urgent and punchy stab at power-pop that bristles and crackles with gusto. Like the b-side to "Lost Cause," "Exhausted," is another lo-fi and intimate affair that again tackles self-defeat. "Sanka," tries to marry the sonic heights of "Firestorm," and "Circular," but unfortunately falls far too short. Thankfully, Sleepless ends on a winning note with the dusky acoustic ballad "For the One I Used to Love."
Being that Gordon is a DIY artist operating on a small budget one can make concessions for the fact that Sleepless' production leaves a lot to be desired. But one can't help but wonder why Gordon chose to up the sonic ante so frequently on Sleepless? The LP's most inspired efforts are definitely the more winsome acoustic efforts that find beauty and simplicity in restraint. Hopefully as Gordon continues to work on future material, he finds a way to soften the disc's sonic edges and finds a way to marry the album's more intimate and inviting moments with his more upbeat and urgent material.