^
Keep Dallas Observer Free
4

Sleep Whale's Joel North Explains His Band's Name Change

Just caught up with Joel North of Sleep Whale, which, at this point is still probably best known as the ambient instrumental Denton act fromerly known as Mom, to talk about his band's name change. What it boil's down to, North says, is simply a matter of clarification for North and collaborator Bruce Blay's project.

"Bruce and I just exchanged a lot of confusion with mum, the band from Iceland," North says. "Even last night at the Granada, people showed up looking for mum. The people at the Granada told them it was Mom and not mum, but they didn't believe them. And when we were in Europe, it was that way at every show. It was tough to communicate the difference to people who didn't speak our language."

As such, North says, last night's gig from the act is the last in which people can expect to see the band billed as Mom. This Saturday, for instance, the band will formerly makes its Sleep Whale debut during Gutterth Productions' "Waving Hands" event at Rubber Gloves in Denton.

But the difference between Mom and Sleep Whale isn't solely in the name, North adds.

Also new to the act are two members: Paul North, Joel's younger brother who also performs around the region under the moniker of Sunnybrook, and Spencer Stephenson, a musician from Weatherford that Blay and North met through mutual friends in Matthew and The Arrogant Sea. Both additions were made as a result of North and Blay's desire to expand their band's sound.

"We wrote [our upcoming] record for four people," North says. "And the next record, we're going to write with all four people contributing."

As for the record the band is currently writing? "I've got four more songs to play the cello on and then we're done," North says. And, after which, the songs will be sent John Congleton's way for mixing in March. The disc should then be available at some point in the summer.

I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Dallas and help keep the future of Dallas Observer free.

OK. But why then choose to name the band after one of its own songs?

Says North: "That song in particular, when I moved to California for a few months before we started recording... Bruce wrote that song and I was like, 'OK, I'm coming home."

No one ever said these guys weren't sentimental.

Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.

 

Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.