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Review: 'Sleepingdog'
'With Our Heads in the Clouds...'   

-  Album: 'With Our Heads in the Clouds...' -  Label: 'Gizeh Records'
-  Genre: 'Ambient' -  Release Date: '25th April 2011'-  Catalogue No: 'GZH31'

Our Rating:
It's not often music so quiet and seemingly understated has the capacity to envelop the listener's mind so completely within a matter of a couple of minutes, prompting them - quite unwittingly - to stop everything and simply listen, mouth half-open, rapt by the sheer beauty of the sound. And yet that's precisely what the majestic, magnificent opener to Sleepingdog's third album, 'With Our Heads in the Clouds and Our Hearts in the Fields' achieves. Initially a sparse piano is the sole accompaniment to Chantal Acda’s millpond-calm vocals, before layers of organ build subtly to forge an atmosphere that's beyond rarefied.

So it is that Sleepingdog, a collaboration between Acda (one half of True Bypass with Craig Ward (ex-dEUS) and Adam Wiltzie, renowned for his recordings as one half of Stars of the Lid, draws the listener in as they weave their way through eight spellbinding aural dreamscapes. Soft waves of drifting ambience filter through the air on 'Kitten Plays the Harmony Rocket,' while 'He Loved to See the World Through His Camera' comes closest to being a 'pop' song, albeit soaked in long, slow drones and strings. 'From Where It Was' is pure folk, realised with sumptuous layers and hidden depth, and 'Scary Movie' provides a spine-tinglingly delicate curtain-closer to the set.

It's entirely appropriate that this album should have found an outlet on Gizeh, the label that's been consistent in the last few years in releasing beautiful music that combines post-rock, neo-classical and ambient. Label owner, Richard Knox, is one half of Glissando. He clearly has an ear for this sort of thing, and 'With Our Heads in the Clouds and Our Hearts in the Fields' not only reinforces Sleepingdog's reputation as purveyors of beautiful music, but also serves as a reminder of the remarkable standards maintained by Gizeh.

Intent listening is essential. That shouldn't prove a problem though: in its serene yet compelling way, 'With Our Heads in the Clouds and Our Hearts in the Fields' positively commands it.

Sleepingdog Online
  author: Christopher Nosnibor

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Sleepingdog - With Our Heads in the Clouds...