The Sleepers, The Its!
Thursday, January 26, 2006
They say rock ‘n’ roll is on its way back. The Sleepers surely agree. The Chicago band’s full-length debut, Push It Nationwide, is a 10-song reflection of times past when anthemic choruses, extended guitar solos, and a boozy swagger defined rock, not pretty faces, sharp suits, and well-styled hair.
The numerous comparisons to The Rolling Stones scattered among The Sleepers’ press clippings are questionable at this point in their career, but the band’s songs do have a certain nasty flair that evoke garage dwellers like MC5 and The Stooges as well as arena giants like KISS and Aerosmith. Kingpin Detroit producer/engineer Jim Diamond (The White Stripes, Electric Six) produced Push It, and the album maintains the same gritty, no-frills approach as his other projects. The vocals are flat at times, and occasionally the band are too loose for their own good, but the enthusiasm behind dusty-floor stompers like “Bad For Me” and “Jet Set Trash” make up for hit-and-miss execution.
Led by acts like The Steepwater Band and The Last Vegas, the revival of gritty guitar rock is gaining momentum in Chicago, and while The Sleepers aren’t yet among the movement’s elite yet, they are a welcome addition.
The Sleepers headline a show that also includes locals The Its!, The Assembly, and Musical Outfits. After recently re-releasing their self-titled debut on PWMD Records, The Its! are preparing for a spring/summer release of their new EP, which was recorded with the help of Neal Ostrovsky (Webb Brothers). Riding a quirky, melodic rock sound, the band are often mentioned alongside groups like The Strokes and The Von Bondies (IE’s Steve Forstneger cites Superchunk and Beulah, though) and already have MOBfest and a Disk Maker’s Independent Music World Series performances to their credit.
– Trevor Fisher
Click here to download The Its! “In Your Pocket.”
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