THE SLEEPER HAS AWAKENED – s/t (CD Thisco + A Gaveta)

If the liner notes weren’t there, I would have mistakenly presumed that this might have been a little lost gem from the mid-nineties, released by Warp. On their sleeper project the Portuguese duo Helder Luis and Rui Bentes blend electronics, samples and guitar to create a sound that sets them far apart from a lot what is nowadays happening in the alternative scene. The music sounds forceful yet fragile, poppy and experimental at the same time. Released on the Thisco label, which is specialized in Portuguese experimental, electronic and ambient, this EP focuses on electro-eclecticism. The 3 short instrumentals sometimes remind me of the output from Cab Voltaire’s Richard H. Kirk, less hypnotic but it certainly has the same intriguing aesthetics and concealed tension.     

Maybe due to its limited duration (there’s 3 rather short tracks) The Sleeper has Awakened is not completely convincing, but it is well worth checking out, and I would certainly come back if they’d release their first full length effort. The CD comes in a cardboard sleeve, with artwork from the artists themselves and although the rest of the minimal info on the disk cover adds to the riddle that comes with this record, a note stating that this should be listened to a high volume would have been a good thing. PvdG.