Coming of Age


Greek psych rock outfit GODSLEEPtrudges on with their second LP, "Coming of Age,"a title, which is relevant […]
By Sean McGuirk
March 11, 2019
Godsleep - Coming of Age album cover

Greek psych rock outfit GODSLEEPtrudges on with their second LP, "Coming of Age,"a title, which is relevant to both the concept and the band itself, having grown up remarkably since 2015's "Thousand Sons of Sleep."  The addition of vocalist Amie Makrissignals a tectonic shift in the band's sound, one that the strikingly minimal, multicolored album cover (from a photo by Makris) perfectly encapsulates.  Gone is the sludgy meandering, replaced with a newfound focus and a razor-sharp attitude.

"Ex-Nowhere Man"shows immediately what Makris'versatility brings to the table.  Refreshingly, she isn't going for a "witchy" Grace Slickvibe as many female-fronted (ugh, that term) Stoner bands tend to strive for.  Instead, her voice demands your direct attention, with a nihilistic, spunky attitude that was a hallmark of the '90s Alternative movement.  That kind of BIKINI KILLvibe makes "Unlearn"sound in danger of becoming a play-along track on the next "Tony Hawk's Pro Skater" (are they still making those?).  "N.O.U"has a distinct bluesy New Orleans cadence, and highlights the band's overall chemistry and their ability to jam out within a tight song structure.  "Celestial"is a fun psych ride, with a punchy groove and a doomy mid-section that sets up an electric final few minutes.

The production throughout is top notch, thanks to George Leodis, who has helped other Greek psych bands like 1000modsand Last Rizlaachieve that perfect throwback tone.  Bassist Fedonas Ktenasgets a lot of space to play in the mix, while John Tsoumas' riffs are a slice of tube amp heaven.

"Puku Dom"is a short desert rock instrumental that lends some dark atmosphere to the rest of the set.  "Basic,"betrays its name, starting with a few blissful seconds of Makris' astonishing acapella vox before diving into an all-out jazzy space rock odyssey with some TOOLreferences.  "Karma is a Kid,"the heaviest song on the album, showcases some of Makris' high range at the top, before it hurries into an Earth-moving whirlwind of an instrumental jam that lasts for the rest of the song's seven minutes.

This is a great slab of Greek hard rock, akin to psychedelic easy riders MONSTER MAGNET,CORROSION OF CONFORMITYKADAVARor more locally, fellow Athenians, NIGHTSTALKER, but with a more forward-looking and pop-oriented production.  It sucks to say that female vocals are a "twist," but I think it's something that sets the band apart in a male-dominated genre.  The rally cry of "This is the coming of age," on the last track, "Ded Space", is more than an apt final refrain.<

9 / 10

Almost Perfect








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"Coming of Age" Track-listing:

1. Ex-Nowhere Man
2. Unlearn
3. N.O.U.
4. Celestial
5. Puku Dom
6. Basic (The Fundamentals of Craving)
7. Karma is a Kid
8. Ded Space

Godsleep Lineup:

Amie Makris- Vocals
John Tsoumas- Guitar
Fedonas Ktenas- Bass
Dennis Leventos- Drums

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