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The Sleeper [Import]

The Leisure Society Audio CD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
Price: 11.07 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Audio CD (30 Mar 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Willkommen
  • ASIN: B001TA41MI
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 133,953 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. A Fighting Chance 3:320.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. The Sleeper 3:500.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. The Last of the Melting Snow 3:330.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. A Short Weekend Begins With Longing 3:170.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. We Were Wasted 2:550.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Save It For Someone Who Cares 4:010.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. The Darkest Place I Know 3:490.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Are We Happy? 2:540.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. Come To Your Senses 2:310.99  Buy MP3 
Listen10. A Matter of Time 6:020.99  Buy MP3 
Listen11. Love's Enormous Wings 2:310.99  Buy MP3 


Product Description

BBC Review

Released just as the daffodils are on the wane, the confident debut album by this Brighton/London-based group suggests they've been hard at work over the winter, in spite of their moniker. The Sleeper is lush, pastoral and very English, but also peppered with wistful American influences from simpler times - most obviously the 1960s. Though occasionally twee and chocolate box pretty, it's garlanded with lovely melodies that soon anchor themselves in the memory.

Singer/multi-instrumentalist Nick Hemming (ukulele, mandolin, banjo, guitar) and keyboardist Christian Hardy form the core of the group, with impressive arrangements also featuring strings, flute, pedal steel, glockenspiel, and thumb piano among other instruments. Hemming's voice is easy on the ear,

whether unadorned or cloaked in close harmonies that sometimes echo The Beatles. The closest comparison might be The Divine Comedy's Neil Hannon - without the sardonic humour - but there are other times where both his tone and the tunes suggest influences as diverse as Squeeze, The Kinks and Teenage Fanclub.

The Leisure Society's debut single The Last Of The Melting Snow is a swooning, instantly accessible waltz and was deservedly lapped up by BBC radio at the end of last year. New single A Matter Of Time is even better - an ambitious, multi-layered song that unfolds over six minutes with the inexorable, melodic logic of all great pop music.

The album does sag significantly on its second half, beginning with The Darkest Place I Know (where style wins out over content), the lightweight ditty Are We Happy? and the pleasant but unexceptional country chug of Come To Your Senses.

But there are enough other highlights to ensure The Sleeper adds up more than two great singles and some filler. The post-apocalyptic nature imagery of the title track hints at Fleet Foxes, while A Short Weekend Begins With Longing sounds like a lost artefact from San Francisco's Summer Of Love. We Were Wasted shamelessly nicks the guitar motif from Leonard Cohen's The Stranger Song to nifty effect, and the euphoric rush of Love's Enormous Wings has a satisfying sense of resolution, which makes it a fitting closer. --Jon Lusk

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Review

Midlands folk collective's disarming debut. 'America seems an awfully long way to go,' sings The Leisure Society's Christian Hardy on their sweetly turned single The Last Of The Melting Snow. Fair point, but if they'd claimed to hail from Burton, Nebraska rather than Burton-on-Trent, and recorded this beautifully pastoral debut album in a log cabin, we'd surely be falling at their feet. Despite their prosaic origins, Nick Hemming's gang will charm many an ear with the ukelele-laced musings of A Short Weekend, while the minor falls, major lifts and Cohenesque Spanish guitar of We Were Wasted are offset by unlikely references to driving home drunk froma nightclub. In short, they've created a sound steeped in the finest folk-pop traditions while retaining a very British streak of humour and individuality. America's loss; surely our gain. (Johnny Sharp) --Mojo (March 2009, 4 stars)

Their sublime, string-filled debut single, 'The Last of the Melting Snow', was chosen by Elbow's Guy Garvey as his single of the year. And this, their first LP, is full of a similar northern England charm akin to the Mercury winners. From the delicate seed of 'A Fighting Chance', this album grows to a sweet whimsy that delights in a spring time ambience. Close your eyes and you can see the flowers blossom. The lyrics offer a dark nuance though, turning both comic and sombre in a way you d expect from a collective that once counted film director Shane Meadows and actor Paddy Considine amongst its number. Nick Hardy and Christian Hemming have used a folk past to create a pop album of precious subtlety. Even the ukulele makes itself welcome, without the cringe of it sounding like a novelty. This isn t just a debut that promises big things for the future, it s one that delivers greatness already. (Thomas Meek) --The List (Issue 623, Feb 19th 2009, 5 stars)

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The stuff of discreet dreams 8 April 2009
By russell clarke TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
This band have more celebrity endorsements than Red Nose day .The albums sleeve notes thank Mark Radcliffe , Stuart Maconie, Marc Riley ,Lauren Laverne , Zane Lowe ,Dermot O'Leary ( Wot...rather than Eoghan Quigg ?) Bob Harris and Guy Garvey (who cited their December single The Last of the Melting Snow his favourite song of 2008) for their support. You can add me to that salubrious list for what it,s worth ( precisely zero i would imagine). This is a great album .
Singer/multi-instrumentalist Nick Hemming (ukulele, mandolin, banjo, sitar, autoharp, guitar amongst many others) and keyboardist Christian Hardy form the core of the group, with striking arrangements also including strings, flute, pedal steel, glockenspiel, clarinet and erm...talking bowl among other instruments. Hemming used to be in a group with film maker Shane Meadows and shares his acute eye for minute detail and resonant empathy with his subject matter.
Their music has been likened to Americana with a pastoral English bent and that's a pretty good way to describe it. They do sound quintessentially English. So i hear strains of XTC circaSkylarking in the strings on the title track and the aforementioned "The Last Of The Melting Snow" reminds me of a band called Dakota SuiteThe End of Trying who also specialised in radiant but forlorn ballads. There is a real pop sensibility on a track like "Save It For Someone Who Cares" while "The Darkest Place I Know" could come off an Eno
... Read more ›
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Leisure Society - The Sleeper 1 Aug 2009
By B. Wright VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
This album is one of my favourites of the year so far. Each song is beautifully composed and interspersed with many different instruments. There are flute and strings to provide some orchestration, mixed with banjos, ukelele and many more. There is even a banjo whig-out at the end of 'Save It for Someone Who Cares' which recalls 'Duelling Banjos'. The singing is tight too, with close harmonies between Nick and Christian, as well as accompaniment from the rest of the band. It is some of the best Americana you will hear that didn't come from America.

Nick Hemming and Christian Hardy have created a feel good album, full of intelligent lyrics and catchy melodies. Their Ivor Novello nominated single 'Last of the Melting Snow' is a mournful tale of an ended relationship, while 'We Were Wasted' is a nostalgic tale of nights out in Hemming's native Burton-on-Trent. The rest of the album touches on death, more lost love, happiness and more. There is a gentle cohesion to the themes and sound which makes it feel like an excellent album, rather than just a collection of songs. Opening with the lazy 'Give Yourself a Fighting Chance', it is just under 40 minutes of aural bliss.

This is a fantastic debut and the band deserves recognition. It sits firmly alongside the new wave of British folk - similar in sound to Laura Marling, Mumford & Sons, Noah and the Whale, and The Boy Least Likely To - but also The Kinks in their 'Village Green Preservation Society' era, with the nostalgia, the wit and wistful lyrics. My favourite tracks are 'A Short Weekend Begins with Longing' and 'A Matter of Time', but all of the songs are brilliant and it comes highly recommended. Buy it now, you won't regret it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars sleeper but not soporific 4 May 2009
Format:MP3 Download
I first came across this group (if they are actually a group) through the playing of their music on Radio 2's Radcliffe and Maconie show as they released singles - this promotion of the group was recently capped with an outstanding live session which proved what wonderful songsmiths the Society are.

This is simply beautiful music - it's music to savour, to enjoy in a very unhurried manner - smooth melodies, joyful harmonies and just the most feelgood presence to the sounds.

The quality of the songwriting is excellent and has been recognised by the industry with the Ivor Novello nomination for the haunting "last of the melting snow".

I love smooth melodic music and currently listen to Fleet Foxes, Belles Will Ring, The Capitol Years, The Beach Boys (endlessly), the Association (showing my age!) - and the Leisure Society are right in there with this beautiful offering - if you want to bang your head or jump about, go buy something else - if you want to drift along, then this is a must.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Victor HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
I first came across Leisure Society when I saw them in support of Laura Marling on her Cathedrals tour. They were good, and as it turns out my girlfriend owns both of their albums I had the opportunity to listen to them on record. In concert they played a very stripped back set, so I was a little surprised at the richer production found here, but it was a good move as this is a highly enjoyable album. It's kind of an indefinable sound - gentle indie folk rock perhaps? Beautifully crafted songs (and I do mean crafted - it's obvious a huge amount of effort and thought has gone into every little detail) in which a rich production supports light, floating vocals. It's a very layered, thoughtful record full of some great hooks couped with a rich, textured feel.

This is the single disc edition of their debut album. There is a two disc edition which includes a second disc titled `A Product of the Ego Drain' available for not much more. That album contains B sides and demos, and a fascinating take on Gary Numan's `Cars', and it is well worth getting that set instead.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Not that good.
I bought this for one track heard as part of a film soundtrack. It was excellent but the rest did not live up to it.
Published 1 month ago by R. Walker
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't fault this album...it's stunning in everyway !
First class songwriting and production from this talented duo, Nick and Chris...I love this album. An absolute treasure! everyone must hear this CD
Published 9 months ago by SHARON lewis
5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant
I adore this. Didn't know the band at all but heard them on Radio 6. Just awesome album and my friends have asked about it when they heard it playing too. You'll like it: get it!
Published 11 months ago by Mrs. L. E. Baxter
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprise Find
What a lovely album. I first heard tracks on BBC6 Music and just had to research this CD. Sounds great at home, probably not for the car. Buy it, you'll love it.
Published 15 months ago by IAN HATSWELL
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning
There is very little I can add to the reviews that others have already written and the sheer number of radio presenter endorsements. Read more
Published 21 months ago by Mistered
4.0 out of 5 stars Melody makers
This is a really great album. They can be unfairly compared to other folk/pop avatars but they stand alone in terms of melody and variety. Read more
Published on 16 Mar 2012 by E. R. Hartley
4.0 out of 5 stars Sleeper
A very prompt delivery, with very good communication. Everything fine with the product with the CD and case in new condition and playing fine.
Published on 19 Sep 2011 by N. Murphy
5.0 out of 5 stars The Slee - far from sleep inducing
We had heard this group being interviewed on Radio 2 and on that basis bought the CD. What wonderfully original sound and lyrics performed by people who can actually play their... Read more
Published on 28 Oct 2009 by S. Jenkinson
5.0 out of 5 stars A Breath of Fresh Air......
The Leisure Society new release 'The Sleeper', is an absolute gem of an album. For a while now, after seeing them perform live and following them on Myspace and Youtube, I've been... Read more
Published on 12 Oct 2009 by S. Faulkner
5.0 out of 5 stars It's Getting Better All The Time
I was knocked sideways when I caught them on a lovely summer's day at the The Big Chill. It was the cover version of Cars that clinched it and then I had to go and buy the album. Read more
Published on 23 Sep 2009 by T. Evans
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