[Interviews] Seven Sisters of Sleep – « 5 dudes with aches and pains »

Since their beginning in 2010, Seven Sisters of Sleep have been releasing consistent albums with an increasing level of agression. Mixing sludge with hardcore in the vein of Iron Monkey, their assault has always felt like being hit a truck… except the truck kept getting bigger every time. Weirdly enough, they remained low on the radar of most sludge fans, never getting far away from the halo of faithful fans of A389 releases. Thankfully, they recently signed to Relapse Records, along with label mates Ilsa and Noisem, because of A389 downsizing exercise (it’s hard to manage a label, it’s even harder when you’re alone). They just released this year their first album via Relapse and I reviewed it recently. Time to ask a few questions about the band and its new album.

Could you introduce yourself as a band for people who have no idea who you are ?

Ssos is 5 dudes with aches and pains associated with being grown ass men with kids and bills who have known eachother and worked with each other in various other bands for a long time. We make ugly and loud sounds.

I have been listening to your albums since your first release on A389 Records and since then your music has become increasingly aggressive. Is it a motivation for you when you write each albums ?

It is definitely an intentional thing to try to outdo the last record. In every aspect. A lot of it has to do with how long we have been playing in this lineup. This year is 7 years. We have progressed as musicians and with working with one another in songwriting in that time. The first record was really just friends fucking around at the time but there was something different about it even then. Like the feeling of being on to something that none of us really had in any of our older projects.

Both Opium morals and Ezekiel hags album covers feature a circle with a character place in the middle, is there a reason between this choice ?

Both albums are kind of linked. Like a chapter 1, chapter 2 kind of thing. So the design was intentional.

You used an upright bass for the recording of Ezekiel hags, what did this instruments brought to the recording ?

The upright was a total fluke. There just happened to be one in the studio and I just happened to be able to play it because my older sister had one and took lessons. She taught me how to properly bow it. This was when I was a kid. I hadn’t messed with one in a long time but after I finished my drum tracks i started playing with it. I thought it would make a cool layer of atmosphere under the songs and in between. A bowed upright sounds like a mighty sea beast. There was no way we weren’t going to use it.

While reading the lyrics for Ezekiel’s hags I felt the presence of a narrative from song to song. Could you explain the meaning behind this choice of title and some of the ideas behind the lyrics of the album ?

Tim writes all of the lyrics. I know for him, Hags was more personal lyrically so he was drawing more from experience than precious records. As for the title, Ezekiel’s Hags (witches) are a type of psychedelic mushroom.

What are the major differences between working with A389 Records and Relapse Records ?

I guess the biggest difference is that relapse has more moving parts than a389. Relapse has departments and a389 is pretty much just Dom. Both labels are absolutely great people and we are appreciative of what a389 did for us in getting to Relapse.

With which artists outside of music do you feel you share a similar aesthetic with ?

Harley Race, Terry Gordy, Gary Hart, Stan Hansen, Bruiser Brody, Cowboy Bill Watts, Kenta Kobashi, and Sabu just for starters.

Most of the people you picked as artist with whom you feel you share a common aesthetics are wrestlers. What do you think your music has in common with wrestling?

It kicks fucking ass.

To the best of my knowledge you have never played in Europe. Is this something you are planing to do ?

We have not been to Europe yet because for us being older guys, some of us with families, it’s pretty difficult to go. We very much want to and hopefully we will be able to in the future but so far we have only toured the US a few times.

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