Album review: While She Sleeps – SELF HELL

They blew the roof off London’s Alexandra Palace last September, but the tale of While She Sleeps still feels like an underdog story. Staunchly DIY in their approach, the rise of the Sheffield quintet has been hard-won, aided by their faithful fanbase: the Sleeps Society.

With the wind in their sails, it’s hardly surprising that their sixth album, SELF HELL, is their most fearless. The 12-track collection mediates its electronic curveballs with the melodic metalcore mash-up that Sleeps have pioneered over their career, blended to masterful effect. This is their amo; their Holy Hell – proof that this current version of Sleeps is a grade above the band who released SLEEPS SOCIETY in 2021.

Influences from The Prodigy come to the fore on LEAVE ME ALONE, which seamlessly transitions from rapid-fire rager to electronica anthem. Uber-compressed synths herald in a bone-crushing breakdown, as a creeping voice announces, ‘We are While She Sleeps’. It’s a microcosm that personifies the album, where opposite soundscapes can sit cohesively under the same umbrella.