Sleeping Through The War is the most spaced-out and mellow album that All Them Witches have ever made, although I’m not sure that’s a good thing.
To the album’s credit, as with all albums that the band has released, every track presented has its own individual take on the band’s unique style, whilst still managing to feel like a connected musical journey. Everything that makes this particular album great can be heard in the track ‘Don’t Bring Me Coffee,’ which is easily the best song here. It’s filled with subtle, touching guitar lines, wandering, effects-driven ambience, and an intense chorus that keeps you engaged the whole way through.
The album’s final track, ‘Internet,’ is similarly fantastic. It’s got that unique mix of psychedelia and old-school hard rock that the band has become known for, with an especially pronounced element of the former: the entire second half of the song is a slow, acid-drenched instrumental jam. It’s also vastly inferior to the first half of the song.
With that in mind, let’s move onto the negative: it’s the most boring record they’ve released so far. Granted, the previous album was also a very quiet affair, but at least that album had genuinely interesting compositions on it, like the brilliant ‘Talisman.’ There is no ‘Talisman’ on this record. Even if all of the songs on this album differ from each other, that doesn’t necessarily mean that they all stand out; indeed, while the album does maintain a consistent vibe, it does so at the expense of the memorability of the actual songs.
All things considered, I don’t think it’s a bad album, but I can’t help but feel that it’s just a series of boring ideas and poor execution, with just enough momentum in some tracks to keep you holding out hope until the end, at which point you realise that you just spent 45 minutes listening to a great band’s subtle decline into mediocrity.