INTRO BY ALEXIS ROGERS
INTERVIEW BY CAMI LIBERTY
Sleeplust consists of 4 band members: Amber Ruthe (vocals), Michael Pepe (guitar), Joseph Pepe, (bass), and Sarah Luffred (drums). Based out of Los Angeles, the band creates unique music that showcases their divers backgrounds. Michael and Joseph Pepe, the brothers of the band, are originally from Charlotte, NC. Sarah Luffred is originally from Cleveland, Ohio, and Amber Ruthe is originally from Milwaukee, WI. They all traveled to LA for the same reason: to advance their music careers. In 2017, SLEEPLUST released an EP called “Missing Pieces.” Their two newest singles include “Burning” and “Sedona,” which was released in March 2018. Their music can be found on Itunes, Apple Music, Spotify, and SoundCloud.
How long have you guys been a band and how did you come together?
Joe: "This line up has been together for about a year and a half now. Mike and I, being twin brothers, grew up touring in punk rock bands eventually following our musical passion out here to LA where we weirdly met both Sarah and Amber on Craigslist of all places.
Actually Amber was at one of our shows with our pervious line up and said to herself “I want to be in a band like that.” so she posted a Craigslist ad. That’s the exact ad that I replied to when we were looking for a new front person. Life is funny sometimes."
Where did the name ‘Sleeplust’ come from?
Mike: "We actually get asked this quite often which I think is good and people find the name interesting haha. It actually comes from On The Road by Jack Kerouac. In a part of the book after not being able to sleep for days: “I was lusting for sleep”. It just resonated with Joey and I at the time. It was a very romantic way of looking at insomnia. Also at the time we had just gotten out of loud rock bands and thought we wanted to make super chill vibe music and that fit the genre haha that obviously changed very quickly. We just love guitars and loud drums too much!"
In your own words, how would you describe your music?
Amber: "I would describe our music as a mixture of electronic and indie rock with dance elements that has a sensitive pulse."
Joe: "I always say it electronic influenced Indie Rock."
Mike: "I feel like it is indie rock that leans on keyboard production. Most songs all are guitar, bass, drums and vocals at root and we build from those elements. Even though depending on the song we may lean heavier on the keyboards or heavier on the live instrumentation and arrangements it all lives in the indie rock world."
In March you guys released your latest new song ‘Sedona’. Can you tell us a little about the song and the inspiration behind it?
Amber: "We co-wrote this song with our amazing friends Angela Mukul and Joey Verskotzi. At the time, I had recently taken a trip to Sedona with my now fiancé for our anniversary. During our entire adventure, I just kept thinking about how lucky I am to have found someone who has the same outlook on life and how comfortably unfiltered we are with each other. For every time that someone said the word no or told us that we couldn’t do something, we supported each other and conquered it anyway."
Joe: "Amber can dive more into the lyrics and themes as her and our co-writer Angela were responsible for that. Musically that song was hard to crack. I started it with that verse vocal sample as a demo with just some chords and that’s what Amber and Angela wrote to. After that Mike and I co-produced it with one of our favorite collaborators Joey Verskotzi."
Do you have any goals that you hope to achieve as a band?
Amber: "To keep writing great songs, having incredibly fun shows and to find an awesome manager who is ready to join the madness."
Joe: "Absolutely! We were fortunate enough to sign a publishing deal with Angry Mob Music at the end of 2017. This year is all about releasing lots of new music and hopefully continue to build our team with a manager and label."
Mike: "Most bands here will say a record deal or something of that nature and while yeah that’s attractive and great I really just would like the band and the music to get through to people and touch them in a way a band either hasn’t ever or hasn’t in a while."
Is there anything else we can expect from you in the near future?
Joe: "We’re thinking of possibly releasing one more single and then the EP we’ve been working on. But we have a ton of new music we’re excited to release that we’ve really slaved over and I truly believe it’s the best songs we’ve ever written. Other than that just playing as many cool shows as we can, we just love playing for people."
Sarah: "Next steps: manager, record label. Get our music out there and touring in future."
Mike: "We’re so very excited about the EP we’re in the process of recording. It’s a big step up for us in both songwriting and production."