Listen: ‘Awkward’ by Sleep State

Orange County indie pop band Sleep State has released their new single entitled “Awkward.” The track is available for streaming & purchase now on Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple Music, and iTunes. Ladygunn refers to the track as “quite easily your newest teen-angst unrequited love anthem.”
Sleep State spawned from the potent Southern California Rock scene in 2013 when Orange County locals and longtime friends, Troy Ritchie (guitar, lead vocals) and Michael Haua (keyboard, vocals), began performing at local restaurants, bars, and small venues. While the pair’s obvious raw talent immediately drew a following, it was clear that the music was lacking something.
After a gig the following year, the two were approached by Parker Jackson (drums) who expressed interest in collaborating. It didn’t take long before Sleep State traded in a drum machine for live percussion, and the duo grew into a trio. With an official lineup established, the band set out to find a producer who would resonate with their vibe and vision. They found one in Adrian Alvarado, known for his work with Act As If and Secrets.
The summer of 2015 was a turning point for the upstart group with the release of two singles, “Make a Move” and “Tether.” Featured on notable California music blogs, Buzz Bands LA and Free Bike Valet respectively, the band’s debut tracks were received with sweeping praise. The wistful, melancholic tone of “Tether” was accompanied by a music video and exhibited an intensely earnest side of Ritchie that was not on display in the more upbeat “Make a Move.”
Autumn of the same year, on the heels of these early triumphs, the band rewarded their fast-growing, loyal fan base with the release of a five song EP which immediately garnered accolades from fans and professional musicians alike. “Tether” was quickly picked up by Starbucks to appear on its internationally streamed playlist, while the catchy fan-favorite, “Shook Up,” was featured on LA’s tastemaker NPR-affiliate, KCRW.
The band’s success continued to snowball into 2016, with songs featuring on MTV’s Teen Mom 2 and ABC’s Nashville. That summer, they released a single, “Making up the Rules”. The new song displayed the band’s evolving musicianship and Ritchie’s development into a profound songwriter.
In February 2017, “Make a Move” appeared on CBS’s “Bull,” and more recently, “Tether” hit 600,000 plays on Spotify. Sleep State shows no signs of slowing down in 2018, with the release of their new single “Awkward,” followed by more new music heading into the spring and summer. The band will also perform at LA’s Lucky Strike on March 15th.