New Music: Sleepy and the Noise – Altitudes


There’s some new music coming our way at the end of the month. Ottawa power-pop trio Sleepy and the Noise is fresh out of the womb and ready to rumble, as they get set to drop their debut 4-track EP called Altitudes later this month at Bar Robo.

Originally, Sleepy and the Noise began as a small solo project by Christian Pasiak. While enjoying making his own music as a singer/songwriter, Pasiak got the ambition to grow his performance and add some accompaniment. It wasn’t long until Kira Montfort (Lora Bidner, Kaleigh Watts, Alexy and The Otherside) and Sarah Fitzpatrick (from one of our favourite local folk-rock groups, Steamers) joined the ranks and the complete trio was formed.

“Since we were adapting Christian’s solo songs to a band context and adding our own individual flare, it was more a case of tuning up and perfecting songs, rather than writing,” Fitzpatrick recounts. “But we also had a clear idea of what we wanted from the get go.”

“Recording was a really great experience, since we were working with David Gervais at Swell Studios and he really quickly got a clear idea of the sound we were going for and had lots of suggestions. Since we’re a trio, working in a recording environment lets us try out a bunch of ideas that are harder to try live, like layering different instruments and vocals to fill out the sound.”

Their sound is full and raw, but not overdone or aggressive. Those partial to Pavement or Dinosaur Jr. will be able to sink into Sleepy and the Noise’s sound right away, as they take us on a fun ride that is not only short and punchy, but also contains several moments of cunning lyricism and undaunted instrumentals.

“Lyrically, I take as much from social theory and post structuralist philosophy as from other musicians,” Pasiak clarifies. “But I really appreciate John K Samson, Sufjan Stevens, Andrew Bird – and some leftover angst from the 90s like Propagandhi. As for the sound of this EP, we were trying to get a little taste of our musical variety: the ‘sleepy and the noisy’. Since this is the debut, tried to keep it lighter, even though lyrically these songs document struggles with anxiety, especially My Medusa.”

My favourite track, if I had to choose, would be the song “Mountains & Valleys,” one that elucidates Pasiak’s word-smithing abilities and strong use of metaphors and imagery in his songwriting. Moreover, some irresistible guitar tones and backup vocals by Fitzpatrick makes it one that you won’t be able to resist having on repeat.

Be sure to head to Bar Robo on Sept. 30 for Sleepy & The Noise’s EP Release Party, along with new sensations Mushy Gushy and DJs from Bonnie Doon providing the soundtrack to the night. Doors at 8pm, $10.