Inspired & the Sleep is the San Diego/Los Angeles-based musical project of songwriter/producer Max Greenhalgh and multi-instrumentalist Bryce Outcault. With a revolving lineup of additional players, Greenhalgh and Outcault produce pop arrangements that are at once warmly familiar and sweetly off-kilter. Incorporating traditional indie-rock instrumentation with various electronic elements and vinyl sampling, the pop-rock outfit perpetually reinvents their sound while staying true to their groove-oriented backbone. Greenhalgh’s gentle crooning on matters of intimacy, introspection and love — both lost and found — solidifies the project’s pop ethos over an ever-shifting sonic backdrop.
The band is far from brand new - originally formed in San Diego, CA, they have become a staple in Southern California through various single and EP releases - gaining the attention of some national tastemakers including SPIN, Noisey, Earmilk + more. The new material from the band, beginning with the dreamy single “First Time,” marks and new era for not only the project, but for Max and Bryce as individuals. Over the last year, Max moved up to the Highland Park area of Los Angeles, and created most of the forthcoming music there, while collaborating with Bryce long distance to finalize the tunes. This geographic change resulted in a change in perspective on how to create their music to sculpting holistic tracks versus the constant experimentation they used in the past.,
“First Time” is about the beginning of a relationship, and when a couple catches themselves opening up to each other. “I feel like when you're alone for an extended period, you tend to naturally become guarded as a way of protecting yourself. But it takes even more strength to get to a point where you can let yourself love again,” said Max.
The song draws from a wide range of influences from Canadian pianist Patrick Watson to timeless singers such as Jeff Buckley, Sam Cooke, Al Green, Sam Smith and contemporary artists Milosh and Daniel Caesar. During the recording process, the band became infatuated with vinyl sampling, which resulted in a total evolution of dynamics around the recordings and live show. With strong roots in the groove and rhythm, each song is precisely layered with drums, samples and manipulated loops, and polished vocals to top off and carry each song.
“First Time” is just the beginning of a new sound from Inspired and the Sleep. The new music comes from a honest place and reflects on the trials and tribulations that come with life. They push forward into the unknown and convey that, whether you know it or not, you are on a path and you will land where you are meant to be.