Sleeping Pulse - Under the Same Sky
Ambient Progressive Rock
10 songs ()
Release year: 2014
Reviewed by Alex
Album of the month

Sleeping Pulse is the newest creation of Mick Moss, formerly a half and, after Duncan Patterson’s departure, the only force behind UK melancholic rock outfit Antimatter. Metal enough or not, but Antimatter did receive coverage on MetalReviews pages in the past, and if some of you read my opinions on Antimatter you know it wasn’t always love at first sight, but the Mick Moss’ sung pieces on Planetary Confinement are still some of my favorite ambient rock compositions. To be entirely truthful, on Sleeping Pulse the music is actually composed by Luis Fazendeiro (Painted Black), a Portuguese musician I am completely unfamiliar with, while Mick Moss’ role is to handle vocals and provide lyrical substance to Fazendeiro’s sonic visions.

Under the Same Sky is a fantastic collection of cohesive, yet different, ambient progressive rock songs. Far from just focusing on a mood creation by abstract piano touches somewhere in the margins, Sleeping Pulse actually place a listener in a certain contemplative frame of mind, but does it with fully developed song structures ranging from dark electronic modern day Depeche Mode (Gagging Order, Painted Rust) to acoustic tender The Blind Lead the Blind, buttressed by profound bass and some string arrangements. Syncopated stumbly percussion sections of Parasite and Foreign Body can alternate with dark swells or eerie feedback, and very often Under the Same Sky songs find earthy strength to proceed with distorted guitars, drum rolls (Foreign Body) or even further harshness as in the chorus of Noose. There are clever engaging finds throughout the album. Gagging Order moves to a tambourine-like hand percussion, just as the song develops its guitar focus. The Puppeteer, title fitting, begins with a mechanical rhythm and quiet monotone guitar, until the audience claps and the full story begins. Chamber prog rock of Backfire, open inviting chorus of The Puppeteer with the female background vocals and the “song of the month” War are some of the highlights, the number of which is numerous on Under the Same Sky.

Even if Mick Moss did not provide his vocals on the album, the price of admission here would be worth for instrumentation alone. Yet, with Mick and his deep heartfelt earnest penetrating vocals, songs like War achieve unbelievable passion levels, be it the soft acoustic parts or full-on rocking sections. The video set to War is just as powerful, and highly recommended if you can catch on youtube somewhere.

I often find ambient melancholic rock albums to be quite pleasant for my personal listening enjoyment, but they have limited staying power. Under the Same Sky, by far, was not meant for a single listen, and beckoned me for weeks with its nooks and crannies. Every time I went back I discovered more, and was rewarded, yet I always had to close the proceedings with another spin of War, it is that good. Antimatter and Anathema fans will find a lot to like with Sleeping Pulse, and deservedly so.

Killing Songs :
Parasite, Gagging Order, The Puppeteer, War
Alex quoted 90 / 100
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