Sad guitar noodling rock.
When he isn’t at the front of indie band Scooterbabe, JJ Posway has been working on solo project Sloping. Sloping is a really interesting description for the music though as it feels like sloping off as an indie rocker. Throughout the entire album, there’s an aimless sadness that rings throughout each song. It makes it easy to get into and enjoy.
As seemingly the norm lately, the album clocks in at bang on half an hour. Over the course of the nine tracks, the largely acoustic fronted rock pieces have a bedroom feel. The vocals are mumbled and numb. The guitars have a ‘drifting off to sleep’ noodle to them. It is all purposefully leading you towards that indie numb feeling and Sloping does this well. Standout tracks include opener ‘Brute Force’ that switches into a throbbing bass outro of aggressive gargles after a hazy acoustic first half. ‘Raft’ and ‘Bench Seat’ are beautifully sullen lullabies of acoustic guitar and almost spoken-word vocals. The emptiness of ‘Treading’ allows the sadness space to just ‘be’ too. Most fun is ‘Trail’ – the only really plugged track on the album. It comes in at just two minutes but blasts you with a wall of sound that is both in and out of tune.
A lot of people have cited Elliot Smith as a good barometer for Sloping and I tend to agree. They share the same acoustic softness and that ‘lost in my own sad world’ vibe. My own minor criticism of the album is that some of the songs don’t quite feel fully formed. Many of the shorter songs feel more like sketches rather than completed songs and whilst they are nice, they often didn’t grab me nearly as much as the longer tracks. What I do like about the album is its bedroom production values. It sounds like Sloping is literally going around a room tuning in and out of different songs and its a clever way to transition between them. I just hope there is more to enjoy next time around.
Recommended track: Raft
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