Awake Is The New Sleep

Release Date: 
February 22, 2005
Label: 
New West Records
Release Type: 
Album
  1. Whatever It Is
  2. Gamble Everything For Love
  3. Begin
  4. Catch My Disease
  5. Apple Candy
  6. Ache For You
  7. Into The Dark
  8. No Right Angles
  9. Get Gotten
  10. Close I've Come
  11. The Debt Collectors
  12. We're All In This Together
  13. Light
  14. I'm Willing

Ben Lee has been a mainstay on alternative rock airwaves; it’s hard to believe the Australian singer/songwriter is still only 26. For album number six he comes full circle on a decade of recordings, working with producer Brad Wood (Liz Phair, Smashing Pumpkins) who spearheaded the sound of Lee’s debut record Grandpaw Would in 1995. Awake… follows a comparable blueprint of 2002’s Hey You Yes You: uncomplicated, unassuming, no-gloss pop songs. But there is evidence of a newfangled wisdom in Lee and his sketches of songwriting dexterity, which include the distinctive pop-rocker ("Catch My Disease"), the persuasive ballad ("Get Gotten"), the adoring folk number ("The Debt Collectors") and an indulgently experimental nine-and-a-half minute opus ("Light"). Code one could be the riff-fully sanguine opener ("Whatever It Is") in which the author proposes we chase our instincts, then verifies on the ensuing 13 songs that he does just that. "They might tell you that you shouldn’t," sings Lee, "But do it. Whatever it is." --Scott Holter