HEALTH's John Famiglietti hails SLEEP TOKEN | Revolver

HEALTH's John Famiglietti hails SLEEP TOKEN

"They blew up on a 7-minute song, and that bucks all reality"
health sleep token SPLIT, Mynxii White (left) and Priscilla Rodriguez (right)
photograph by Mynxii White (left) and Priscilla Rodriguez (right)

HEALTH are the band who were lucky enough to open for Sleep Token at their historic Wembley Arena show in December 2023. The L.A. noise-makers have been fusing metal, industrial, pop and electronic fuckery since the mid-2000s, and in that time they've toured with Nine Inch Nails, collab'd with Lamb of God, and scored Grand Theft Auto games. HEALTH have seen a lot, but multi-instrumentalist John Famiglietti has never witnessed anything quite like Sleep Token.

"I think Sleep Token is just so incredible… In heavy music, or even in just rock, even in the last decade or 15 years, there's so few stories of bands ever breaking through," he says. "This is one of the few times I've seen a band go from a fucking club to an arena in six months. And I don't know the last time that happened."

Famiglietti finds it doubly exciting — and head-scratching, for that matter — that Sleep Token managed to get as big as they are while defying all the traditional metrics for success in the streaming-music era of short attention spans and soulless playlist fodder.

"They blew up on a seven-minute song and that bucks all reality," he says of "The Summoning"'s improbable virality. "And just that section blowing up on TikTok shows what a total Wild West we are in. Also, what I do enjoy about them is there's nothing retro about the group. I could put the album on and there's no, 'Oh, it sounds like' — no, it's very [now].

"It's exciting to me that there is a modern wave of stuff — you want to call it metal or not, it's in the heavy space — that is resonating, that is getting bigger, and it's modern. It's not just a rehash. And it's genre-bending, it's produced modernly, it's using modern influence from pop and R&B and other shit like that. But it speaks to people, it's not alienating.

"[It is] very exciting to me about the health of the heavy world. It hasn't felt this alive for a long time."

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