Sleep On It’s ‘Pride And Disaster’ Shines With Nostalgia And Growth


Alt Press

Chicago based pop-punk band Sleep On It have returned to the scene stronger and ever, with release of “Pride and Disaster” this past Sept. 13.

Natalie Dest, Managing Editor

One of pop-punks newest additions has only moved forward, quickly becoming one of the boldest and musically ambitious bands to emerge from a crowded scene. Chicago based band Sleep On It has returned with their newest LP “Pride and Disaster,” a vulnerable creation of work that’s built upon authenticity and the reality in finding yourself.

Since their first studio length album release “Overexposed” back in 2017, “Pride and Disaster” is a 10-track story that eludes nostalgia and the musical progression that Sleep On It has made in the last two years.

“I think ‘Pride and Disaster’ is a refined version of our songwriting, taking the elements that we loved about ‘Overexposed’ and polishing them,” guitarist Jake Marquis said in an interview with The Recorder. “All the while expounding upon new ideas that can encapsulate our wide range of influences.”

Similar to State Champ’s embrace of classic, feel-good pop-punk with “The Finer Things,” Sleep On It’s newest record will have fans feeling their most authentic self by the end of the album. Showcasing new talents, there are immediate differences that raise the bar for the value of this record.

Commencing the “Pride and Disaster” era is the first track “Racing Towards a Red Light.” This opener stands strong, thanks to the voice of lead vocalist Zech Pluister and background harmonies from TJ Horansky and Marquis.

Closing the chorus with the lyrics, “There’s a long road in front of me,” it feels as though the band is kicking off their journey of this record’s story, with the help from the track’s catchy melodic riffs.

Following is “Hold Your Breath,” the second single released off the album. Best described as a classic punk anthem, this track soars with its empowering lyrics and heavy guitar riffs that drive the song to its full potential. Especially with its vocal breakdown post-bridge, this song is meant to be performed live.

Once again, the band’s instrumental drive is something to notice in “Babe Ruth.” The track’s guitar solos and drumming from Luka Fischman are easily noted. With the lyrics, “I can now remember every flame we burned when we were young…/ Growing up, but never getting old / We’ll stay, don’t ever run away,” this song oozes with nostalgia, capturing the youthful essence of pop-punk.

“Under the Moment” lands at track number four, being the album’s leading single. Released July 16, this song served as the introduction of Sleep On It’s new and improved sound they had yet to showcase.

“‘Under the Moment’ was a song we wrote in the studio with Mike Green and it probably veers the furthest from what people know as Sleep On It,” Marquis said. “However, we loved it and thought that might be the best way to launch the record with a song you may not expect from us. Our fans have really embraced it and we’re glad they do because we were honestly afraid they wouldn’t.”

The song is inspired by feelings of anxiety and times of depression with the lyrics, “Take my hand, pull me again, from under the moment / Promise I won’t drag you down.”

The track “Fix the Dark” is one of the album’s rather loud alternative songs that is meant to land itself on Spotify’s “Pop Punk’s Not Dead” playlist. With a slightly heavier feel to the start, the song once again takes a spin on the modern pop-punk sound.

“After Tonight” follows, the third single released before the album’s drop. Once again, the band’s youthful inspiration is evidently found. This song explodes with punk-rock hooks and a chorus that’s meant to be stuck in your head. Pluister’s vocals soar in between harmonies and clearly show that he has only grown from his debut two years ago.

Following is “Take Me Back,” a song that showcases the band’s talent brilliantly, holding the potential to become a well-known staple for their career. Although this track may leave you teary-eyed, the lyrics are reminiscent and deliver the overall essence of this album’s purpose.

Pluister’s melodic vocals are matched perfectly with the band’s instrumentation. This song is a classic and simple pop-punk song that this genre often misses. The simple vulnerability of the lyrics and pure production makes this track arguably one of the best on the record.

Similarly, “The Cycle of Always Leaving” is a bittersweet tune that tackles the not-always-easy process of moving on from a past relationship. This song continues along with similar vibes of the rest on the album, being lighthearted about young love and lust.

“Logan Square” follows, a title inspired by Logan Square in Chicago, IL. The band reminisces of a place they say will “always be home,” in a song that makes you think of your own hometown. Although another bittersweet track, this song has many focused melodies that showcase a widespread array of improved instrumentation.

Ending the record’s journey is “Lost and Found,” and it is anything but just a closing track to an album. It is easily one of the most compelling and sentimental songs that Sleep On It has produced. The powerful vocals and honest lyrics will pull on your heartstrings.

Pluister’s vocals sound even stronger in this track as he sings the lyrics, “I’ve been crawling my way towards the things that I need / Would you spin me around to see that I’ve always been enough for the people I loved endlessly.”

From beginning to end, “Pride and Disaster” is a wholehearted journey of ups and downs that have shaped Sleep On It into the band they should be proud of being. The record’s vocal techniques and musical liberation give fans a creation from passion and honest experience, an album worth supporting.

“I want fans to take away it’s hopefulness,” Marquis continued. “I think overall, ‘Pride and Disaster’ is about overcoming obstacles whether they be mental or physical. It’s about acknowledging the past but learning from it and being a better version of yourself.”