Album Review: Winter by Vancouver Sleep Clinic


Artist: Vancouver Sleep Clinic
EP: Winter
Hometown: Brisbane, QLD
Genre: Indie

Vancouver Sleep Clinic’s outstanding first EP Winter offers a poetic and chilling arrangement of tracks, taking the listener on a seasonal journey of heartbreak, loss, regret and acceptance.

As you listen, the effortless and sleepy tracks slowly emerge, bringing with them a refreshing spirit, melancholy attitude and at times revitalising tone. The musical arrangements, angelic vocals, and outstanding lyrical artistry make for unique and at times exciting experience.

Starting off with a “Collapse” the listener is given a chilling taste off what Winter has to offer.  This track leaves you feeling a bit empty and regretful but definitely wanting more. It feels bitter yet optimistic, a perfect collision of emotions. “Collapse” is a slow start, but a perfect opening, providing space for growth, seems fitting as the song proclaims “we’ve been outgrown”.

Before too long we begin to see some “Flaws” of Winter. This track was my favourite to begin with, but has slowly fallen down the ranks. Although catchy, and very beautiful, after a couple listens the repetition gets rather tiring and tone draining. This song kind of confuses me, because I really love it, but I also really hate it.

I really do like that there is a sound that is carried out across all the tracks of the album, connecting them and turning them into a collaborative story. “Stakes”, is a strong addition to the narrative, it has a rather enchanting sound that you can easily get lost in. It’s strengths lie in the high’s and low’s of the song, and the buildups that happen in between. It also reveals a shift in mood for the EP, moving away from the bitter optimism of earlier tracks into a more hopeful realm. Hinting at a readiness to let go and “wash away”.

Acting as a perfect intermission, the beautifully instrumental “(Aftermath)” takes the stage, allowing for a moment of thought, slowly lifting spirits and letting go of the iciness of Winter: 

Oh lover, asleep at last
Oh lover, it’s in the past
Of dust we rise and dust we part
So bless these lungs and save my heart.

As if to say spring has arrived “Vapour” is introduced, ready to accept the past and move forward. Another favourite from the EP this track has been exceptionally crafted, there is not much more that can be said, just listen- it is lovely:

“Rebirth” is the finale of the album, an incredible track that beautifully brings the Winter story to an end. The song allows for the past to be forgotten and somehow creates a special calmness that leaves the listener feeling fearless and happy. The song is very reflective of the EP as a whole and carefully takes the opportunity to find a sense of completeness as the journey comes to a close: “It’s taken the winter to find who I am”.

Winter is available for your ears now, be sure to check it out on iTunes or Spotify, it is wonderful. 

By Sophie Henry


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