The Sleepers’ debut five-song EP, originally released in
1978, is one of the truly essential records to come out of
California in the late ’70s. It is 100% punk in spirit and
yet avoids every punk cliché. The band’s original lineup of
Ricky Williams, Michael Belfer, Paul Draper and Tim
Mooney operates here as a machine—a temperamental one
rattling in unison.
Opener “Seventh World” trudges through many tempos
without repeating a single one, while Williams’s astonishing, Robo-fueled voice douses the microphone with esoteric
imagery. Each track creates a new template for psychedelic
rock and discards it by the time the next one begins. This
record inexplicably transcends the mere sum of its parts.