Exposé Online banner

Sleepyard — Black Sails
(Global Recording Artists GRA 13442, 2014, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2014-07-04

Black Sails Cover artSometimes lethargic music can be beautiful and idyllic, paralyzing the listener and creating a magical yet introspective world of stillness and wonder. It’s hard to fit Sleepyard into any convenient pre-defined boxes. It’s not floating ambient, there is far too much structure and form here, but for the most part it eschews the idioms of rock, jazz and folk, but it does flirt with them. Perhaps their music could be thought of as a crossing point somewhere between psychedelic and shoegazer pop, with some other ideas mixed in. So what exactly is Sleepyard, anyway? At the core of the band are Norwegian siblings Oliver and Svein Kersbergen, the former a multi-instrumentalist (piano, keyboards, guitars, bass, voice & treatments) and primary composer, the latter primarily keyboardist. Add to that a long list of additional guests on a variety of instruments (extra keys, guitar, viola, pedal steel, drums, vocals and more), including some names that most will recognize: Judy Dyble sings on and co-wrote several tracks, Nik Turner plays sax, and Geoff Leigh contributes flute. Across the ten tracks, ideas shift and morph in almost an impressionist setting, with pastel colored melodies, long moments of darkness, fleeting and muted voices, textural sonic backdrops and stirring suspense. Black Sails is a fully realized work that succeeds in conveying that passive feeling and peaceful contemplation.

Filed under: New releases, 2014 releases

Related artist(s): Nik Turner, Geoff Leigh, Judy Dyble, Sleepyard

Latest news

2018-07-31
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more

2018-07-09
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more

2018-07-01
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more

2018-06-25
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more

2018-06-13
Jon Hiseman RIP – One of the great drummers of the rock era has died. Jon Hiseman was a veteran of such ground-breaking groups as Colosseum (I and II), Tempest, John Mayal's Bleusbreakers, and was a founding member of the innovative large band United Jazz + Rock Ensemble. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Pink Floyd - Total Eclipse – Sometime last year Pink Floyd released some sort of 25th anniversary collectors box set, the title eludes me at the moment, but the content does not: it was simply a bunch of their regular albums...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues