Best Art-Rock Disc (2007)

Laps in the Sleep Saloon

The old cliche about too many chefs spoiling the soup became an old cliche for the usual reason: In the vast majority of cases, it's true. But the men and women of Rabbit Is a Sphere are the exception that proves the rule. Robert Rutherford, Natalie Winslow and Christopher Nelsen all sing lead, and along with Georgina Guidotti, they contribute to the compositions that make up Laps in the Sleep Saloon. As a result, the disc is busy instrumentally, with various guitars and keyboards taking roads less traveled, and the lyrics, which aim for poetry rather than settling for mere rhymes, echo with multiple voices. That's typically a recipe for chaos, yet the musicians' disparate sensibilities combine to make "Cough and Convince," "Newscasters on Cocaine" and the rest of the Sphere's songs stronger than if they'd been delivered by a single individual. The group demonstrates that some mighty tasty fare can emerge from a crowded kitchen.


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