Published Oct 03, 2019It's been three years since the release of Devoted, the first full-length from L.A.-based Rituals of Mine. In the interim, it's been quiet (save for small collaborations with Tricky and the Glitch Mob), and for good reason. Songwriter and vocalist Terra Lopez experienced back-to-back losses, with the death of her father and best friend, and struggled with the tangible grief for years after.
These losses made her confront new realities, and over the years, finally led to a space for reflection and creation, ultimately giving rise to the group's latest three-track EP, Sleeper Hold.
This release follows the same path as Devoted, in that loss plays a central theme. Emotionally heavy, Sleeper Hold is gloomy trip-hop with the dull edges of pop, electronic and R&B peeking through. Dark and heady, heartfelt and melancholic, the album's grit and punch are softened around the edges, musically, while lyrically barbed.
The titles alone betray their content ("Burst," "Heavyweight," "Bad News") and all rest in exaggerated low ends, hauntingly ethereal synth and sorrowful harmonies. As a followup, Sleeper Hold expels a beauty and vulnerability that demands attention. (Carpark)