Synth-Pop Outliers Sleepkit Re Emerge for New Single

“Oxygen On The Autobahn” is out now

Sleepkit is a band who can genuinely be described as mind-expanding; from the nucleus of their songwriting to the texturally-ornamented arrangements, they manage to imbue each aspect of their music with a sly veneer of otherness. Initially more frantic (and loud enough to piss off their neighbours so much that the working title was “Doug Anger”) the band streamlined a recorded jam, refining the vibe, layering in texture and melody until “Oxygen On The Autobahn” emerged. The title was chosen as a nod to Jean-Michel Jarre’s lush 1976 synth opus Oxygène, after founding songwriters Marie Sulkowski and Ryan Bourne realized it was formative for both of them; a staple for respective family trips - Bourne’s camping off the Transcanada and Marie’s actually ripping down the Autobahn.

With producer Scott Munro (Preoccupations, Chad VanGaalen) at the helm, the track feels juicy and propulsive yet somehow austere – it’s heavy but sibilant, with a driving bounce that lives in a kind of Paradise Garage of the mind; like cruising inside an ecstatic fever dream on a mythical Autobahn.


“The lyrics for ‘Oxygen On The Autobahn’ were inspired by my bandmate Henry taking me to the [the famous nightclub] Berghain, while we were on tour with [beloved YYC lofi-pop stalwarts] Lab Coast,” says songwriter Ryan Bourne. “Within minutes I was just dropped into this delicious, dark, existential, mutating bliss-beat for something like 8 straight hours which, when we finally tumbled into the streets of Berlin toward our hosts’ floor, glowing and spent, felt like an hour had passed. All this is fleshed out with some heady panpsychism and playful waxing on ‘altered states of consciousness’. The lyrics imagine a kind of heaven realm discotheque; a bouncing singularity beyond body or mind that’s less about AI and more about love - or conscious light.”

Sprung from the minds of songwriters, singers and co-founders Ryan Bourne (Chad VanGaalen, Ghostkeeper, Plant City Band) and Marie Sulkowski (Texture Twins), and bolstered by the addition of drummer Eric Hamelin (Alvvays, Ghostkeeper) and multi-instrumentalist Joleen Toner (Crystal Eyes, Plant City Band), “Oxygen On The Autobahn” showcases a band whose serious understanding of the pop song is buffered by beautifully detailed texture and a penchant for the slightly skewed. 

Freelance Writer

Emily Hinde

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