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Team Sleep

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Album Review

Team Sleep's debut was in the works for a long time — something like ten years. Head Deftone Chino Moreno used to do four-track stuff with high-school pal Todd Wilkinson, and those casual recordings essentially were the genesis for this self-titled set of modernized mood music. The indie rock and dream pop influences drifting throughout Team Sleep appear in Moreno's day job, too, but barring a few stretches here and there ("Blvd. Nights," the end of "Live from the Stage"), hardness and volume are left largely to the Deftones. In fact, besides Moreno's distinctive vocals, there's little connectivity to his other band. There doesn't need to be. Team Sleep is its own thing, a drifting fog of electronic and analog texture with a pool of interesting collaborators and the distinct feel of late-'80s/early-'90s alternative rock. (Team Sleep could probably do an awesome cover version of Catherine Wheel's "Black Metallic.") So, while "Your Skull Is Red" channels Slowdive and My Bloody Valentine underneath Moreno's plaintive wail, "Delorian" and "Staring at the Queen'" are instrumentals built from Wilkinson's spiny guitar leads and the ultramodern programming/turntablism of Crook. Pinback's Rob Crow contributes vocals on four songs, and while he's not as fervent as Moreno, he does give "Princeton Review" and "Ever Since WWI" an indie rock quality that works with their tense guitars. Mary Timony also guests, co-writing "Tomb of Liegia" with Wilkinson and Crook and matching her famously austere vocal to its chilly electronics and lingering piano figure. Her duet of sorts with Moreno on the beat-damaged "King Diamond" isn't as successful, but it's still a noble experiment on an album full of them. And though Team Sleep occasionally becomes too much of a mood album when its layering gets out of hand, it's a consistently interesting listen.

Customer Reviews

Team Sleep Review

As Perfect Circle is to Tool, Team Sleep is to Deftones.

If you hate on this album.......

If you do indeed hate this album, then you must really just hate music. This record does something a lot of artists wish they could do 1.) experiment 2.) set a mood 3.) Layers melodies 4.) Shows that a drummer doesn't just keep a beat 5.) puts a DJ to good use 6.) puts guest appearences to good use 7.) Seperates you from the world when you listen to it. Look for these guy's next album guaranteed to blow this one out of the water.


Take the song "Teenager" from Deftone's White Pony album. Now imagine 15 tracks with that sound. That is Team Sleep. In a way, the album makes me think of Deftones meets Bright Eyes (Digital Ash) meets Smashing Pumpkins (Adore) but with more of the White Pony feel. I have always thought Chino was great at bringing his voice from screaming to mellow, but we don't hear the latter enough. I have been waiting for Chino to bring this type of sound to an album for a long time now. I definately recomend it.


Formed: 2000 in Sacramento, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s, '10s

After the success of the Deftones' third album, The White Pony, singer Chino Moreno announced his intentions to tackle a new project and take time off from his band. This project ended up becoming Team Sleep, a band made up of vocalist Moreno, turntablist DJ Crook, and guitarist Todd Wilkinson. Wilkinson was a childhood friend of Moreno's, and in fact had never played on an album before. The group tried to blend the moody heaviness of Moreno's other group with the heady beats of Massive Attack. They...
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