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While She Sleeps are an English metalcore band from Sheffield. Formed in 2006, the group consists of vocalist Lawrence Taylor, guitarists Sean Long and Mat Welsh, bassist Aaran McKenzie and drummer Adam Savage. They are currently signed to their own label Sleeps Brothers in the UK and in collaboration with Spinefarm Records in the US and UNFD in Australia. They have released two EPs, And This Is Just the Start and The North Stands for Nothing, and four studio albums, This Is the Six, Brainwashed, You Are We and So What?. They received the Best British Newcomer award at the Kerrang! Awards 2012. The group has maintained the same line-up since its formation, with vocalist Taylor being the only bandmate who is not an original member. Despite this, he has still appeared on every release apart from the group's first EP.

While She Sleeps
While She Sleeps at Rock'n'Heim 2015. From left to right: Mat Welsh, Lawrence Taylor, Adam Savage obscured behind Aaran McKenzie, and Sean Long.
While She Sleeps at Rock'n'Heim 2015. From left to right: Mat Welsh, Lawrence Taylor, Adam Savage obscured behind Aaran McKenzie, and Sean Long.
Background information
OriginSheffield, England, United Kingdom
Years active2006 (2006)–present
  • Sean Long
  • Aaran McKenzie
  • Adam "Sav" Savage
  • Mat Welsh
  • Lawrence "Loz" Taylor
Past members
  • Jordan Widdowson


Formation, first EP and The North Stands for Nothing (2006–2011)Edit

While She Sleeps was formed in Renishaw, near Sheffield, England, in 2006 by vocalist Jordan Widdowson, drummer Adam Savage, bassist Aaran McKenzie and guitarists Mat Welsh and Sean Long. The group had played together in several bands prior to forming While She Sleeps and are described as being "best mates since school".[1] In 2006, they released their first EP, And This Is Just the Start with this being the only release where Jordan Widdowson features on vocals. This EP, however, was not released on a label.[2] After a handful of live shows, in 2009 the majority of the group decided to focus on the band "full time",[3] however, vocalist Widdowson decided to leave the band due to work commitments.[4] With the addition of vocalist Lawrence Taylor the band began working on material for their second EP in a home studio. From late 2009 through to 2010 the band toured heavily throughout the UK and eventually in to Europe.[5] With growing public interest, the band finished work on The North Stands for Nothing which was released on 26 July 2010, through Small Town Records. The band held an album launch show on 24 June at The Plug in their hometown and followed its release with extensive touring throughout 2010,[6] including an appearance at Sonisphere Festival.[7] In October, they signed a deal with Good Fight Music to distribute their music in the United States.[8]

Following the release of their mini-album – backed by their extensive touring – the band's popularity continued to increase and interest from media and labels grew. On 15 February 2011, the band recorded a live in session performance at Maida Vale Studios for BBC Radio 1.[9] They also began to work on new material between touring, releasing the non-album single "Be(lie)ve" through Good Fight Music on 15 March 2011.[10] On 4 May, While She Sleeps were invited to open for Bring Me the Horizon in Sheffield at the O2 Academy.[11] In the summer, they performed at several festivals throughout Europe and supported Bring Me the Horizon for two shows in Ireland at the end of August. While She Sleeps were invited to tour the US with Bring Me the Horizon in August through to October. However, While She Sleeps had to cancel their dates in the US, citing problems with immigration.[12] In October, the band went on their first headline tour through the UK and Europe, with support from Bury Tomorrow and Feed the Rhino.[13]

Lawrence Taylor performing at Slam Dunk Festival 2012

This Is the Six (2012–2014)Edit

On 1 November 2011, While She Sleeps began working on their debut album with producer Carl Bown.[14] First working in Chapel Studios in Lincolnshire, England, to record drums before moving to Treehouse Studios in Chesterfield, England, to record the rest of the album.[15] After recording had finished, the band toured the UK in February 2012 as part of the Kerrang! Tour alongside New Found Glory, The Blackout, and Letlive.[16] It was announced on 27 March, that While She Sleeps had signed with Search and Destroy Records to release their début album.[17] On 4 April, Kerrang! magazine revealed that the upcoming album This Is the Six will be released on 6 August 2012[18] however the release date was later changed to 13 August.[19] The title track "This Is the Six" was released as the first single from the album on 13 May.[20] While She Sleeps are scheduled to appear at festivals and shows throughout the UK and Europe in the summer, including their first appearance at Download Festival.[21] Followed by their first tour of Australia as direct support for House vs Hurricane, in late July and early August.[22] On 7 June 2012, While She Sleeps won an award for Best British Newcomer at the Kerrang! Awards 2012.[23]

Following the success of their debut album, This Is the Six, released 13 August 2012, While She Sleeps embarked on a full 9 date headline UK tour during September with support from Polar, Crossfaith and Bleed from Within. The band then embarked on a European Tour in the Fall, supporting Architects alongside Heights. While She Sleeps then joined Motionless in White and Betraying the Martyrs to support Asking Alexandria in their UK and European Tour. The band also played the Soundwave Festival across Australia during 2013. The band supported Parkway Drive across America and Canada during spring 2013. The band, following this, embarked on a short headline run of the UK when returning from the Parkway Drive tour. While She Sleeps were also confirmed on 4 January 2013 to be playing the entire length of Vans Warped Tour in America and Canada.

Origin of the nameEdit

In an EMP interview in 2013, the singer Lawrence explained that the name of the band originated from a magazine with a story of a woman murdering her husband while he slept, and changed it to "she" instead of "he." Lawrence also explained that he likes to view the name as a reference to a vehicle or a ship sunken in the bottom of the sea, as ships and other vehicles are often referred with the feminine pronoun.[24]

The band performing in Cologne in 2013

Taylor's throat surgery and Brainwashed (2014–2016)Edit

During Warped Tour, they confirmed they had started to write their second full-length studio album. The latter part of 2013 saw vocalist Taylor suffer from vocal problems, leading to the band cancelling shows into 2014 in order for him to undergo throat surgery and recovery.[25]

While She Sleeps announced a release for their second full-length studio album, Brainwashed on 23 March 2015. To support the album, the band embarked on a co-headline tour with Cancer Bats in April 2015, while also playing 2015's Warped Tour.

You Are We (2016–2018)Edit

In early 2016, the band mentioned that they had begun writing for their third studio album. On 29 July, they announced that recording for the album had begun in their recently built studio.

On 4 September, they revealed the first song, titled "Civil Isolation", and on 12 September launched pre-orders and a PledgeMusic campaign for the album. Also on 12 September they parted ways with their record label.

The first single, "Hurricane", was released on 20 November, alongside an announcement that the album will be titled You Are We and released on 21 April 2017. The same day the band announce their signing to Australian independent label UNFD. On 23 February 2017, they released a song titled "Silence Speaks" featuring Oliver Sykes, vocalist of Bring Me the Horizon. In April 2017, the group embarked on a month long tour of The United Kingdom and Ireland.

So What? (2018–present)Edit

While She Sleeps live at Rock am Ring 2019

On 7 June 2018, the band announced that they are in the process of writing their next album. They also released a special edition of You Are We on 20 July, featuring unheard material, demos and live tracks from their September 2017 stripped down show at St Pancras Church.[citation needed]

On 26 October 2018, the band posted an image of an individual in a white hazmat suit and gas mask across their social media. The figure held a flash drive, which the posts said contained new music from the band, and could be retrieved from these figures at numerous locations in England.[26] The song on the drive was a snippet of the first single, "Anti-Social", which premiered on 28 October on the BBC Radio 1 Rock Show.

On the music video for "Anti-Social", the band announced So What? as the title for their fourth studio album. It is scheduled to be released 1 March 2019 through Sleeps Brothers, their own label, and in collaboration with Spinefarm Records. The band said that they wanted total creative control and so chose to self-release and partner up with a label.

UK and European tour dates in February 2019 were announced in support of the album as well as the support acts, Stray from the Path, Trash Boat and LANDMVRKS.

On 21 December, the band released the single "Haunt Me" and its corresponding music video, directed by bassist Aaron Mackenzie.[27] Three weeks later, it was announced that the band would be supporting Architects on the North American leg of their "Holy Hell" headlining tour, along with Thy Art Is Murder.[28]

On 30 January 2019, the band released the third single from the album "The Guilty Party".[29] On 6 December, the band released a new single, "Fakers Plague" and its corresponding music video.[30]

Musical style and influencesEdit

While She Sleeps' musical style has often been described as metallic hardcore (hardcore punk-leaning metalcore)[31] by reviewers.[32][33][34][35][36][37] They have also been called hardcore punk.[38] They have cited Thrice, Slipknot, Foo Fighters, Underoath, Refused, Comeback Kid, Gallows and Alexisonfire as musical influences.[39][40][41][42][43] The band's sound typically features heavily down-tuned guitars, thick bass tones, screamed vocals and fast-paced drumming – occasionally complemented by melodic guitar tones and piano interludes. When questioned about the progression between their second EP The North Stands for Nothing and their 2012 studio album This Is the Six, guitarist Welsh said that they have not changed their sound drastically, saying "it's super heavy but then it's melodic too".[1]


Kerrang! AwardsEdit

Year Nominee / work Award Result
2012 While She Sleeps Best British Newcomer Won[23]

Heavy Music AwardsEdit

Year Nominee / work Award Result
2018 You Are We Best Album Won[44]

Band membersEdit

Current membersEdit

Former membersEdit

  • Jordan Widdowson – lead vocals (2006–2009)




Studio albumsEdit

Extended playsEdit


Music videosEdit

Song Year Album Director(s)
"Crows" 2011 The North Stands for Nothing Tom Welsh
"Be(lie)ve" The North Stands for Nothing (Deluxe Edition) and This Is the Six
"This Is the Six" 2012 This Is the Six
"Dead Behind the Eyes" GETDELUXE Films
"Seven Hills" Tom Welsh
"Our Courage, Our Cancer" Stuart Birchall
"Death Toll" 2013 This Is the Six (Deluxe Edition) Ben Thornley & Paul Burrows
"New World Torture" 2014 Brainwashed N/A
"Four Walls" Tom Welsh
"Our Legacy" 2015
"Brainwashed" N/A
"Civil Isolation" 2016 You Are We N/A
"Hurricane" Tom Welsh
"You Are We" 2017 N/A
"Silence Speaks" Tom Welsh & Taylor Fawcett
"Feel" Aaran McKenzie
"Empire of Silence" Ryan Chang
"Steal the Sun" Ryan Chang & Mat Welsh
"Anti-Social" 2018 So What? Tom Welsh & Taylor Fawcett
"Haunt Me" Aaran McKenzie
"The Guilty Party" 2019 Tom Welsh & Taylor Fawcett
"Elephant" Aaran McKenzie
"I've Seen It All" N/A
"Fakers Plague" Non-album single


  • The band released a documentary called 20 Days of Sleeps directed by Tom Welsh.[45][46][47]
  • The band released a documentary called So What? The Documentary directed by Roscoe Neil.[48]


  1. ^ a b Territt, Katie (17 May 2012). "Stereoboard speak to While She Sleeps about new album 'This Is The Six' & breaking their mold!". Stereoboard. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
  2. ^ a b McKenzie, Aaran (28 March 2019). "While She Sleeps First EP". Imgur. Retrieved 28 March 2019.
  3. ^ Interview: While She Sleeps. Hit The Floor Magazine. Event occurs at 1:30. Retrieved 3 April 2012.
  4. ^ McKenzie, Aaran (6 June 2012). "WSS Bassist confirms reasons behind previous vocalists departure". Archived from the original on 6 June 2012. Retrieved 6 June 2012.CS1 maint: unfit url (link)
  5. ^ "While She Sleeps". The Agency Group. 2010. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
  6. ^ "While She Sleeps – The North Stands for Nothing. Album Launch". The Plug. 24 June 2010. Retrieved 3 May 2012.
  7. ^ Bezer, Terry (10 August 2010). "Sonisphere Review: Motley Crue, Audrey Horne, While She Sleeps". Metal Hammer. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
  8. ^ "While She Sleeps signs with Good Fight Music". 15 October 2010. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
  9. ^ Carter, Daniel P. (15 February 2011). "While She Sleeps In Session". BBC. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
  10. ^ "Be(lie)ve – single". iTunes. 15 March 2011. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
  11. ^ Reid, Sean (January 2011). "Parkway Drive and While She Sleeps Added to BMTH Sheffield Show". Alter The Press!. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
  12. ^ "While She Sleeps Forced To Cancel US Tour". Legends Arising. 20 August 2011. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
  13. ^ While She Sleeps Headline Tour October 2011!. While She Sleeps. 30 September 2011.
  14. ^ "While She Sleeps studio diary Part 1". Rock Sound. 11 November 2011. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
  15. ^ "While She Sleeps studio diary Part 2". Rock Sound. 6 December 2011. Retrieved 3 June 2012.
  16. ^ "Check out the new While She Sleeps track!". Kerrang!. 2 April 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
  17. ^ "Brand New Sony Music/Raw Power Management Label 'Search & Destroy' Sign Don Broco & While She Sleeps". Hit The Floor Magazine. 27 March 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
  18. ^ "While She Sleeps reveal details of their new album". Kerrang!. 4 April 2012.
  19. ^ "Important News For This Is The Six". wssofficial. Retrieved 7 August 2012.
  20. ^ "While She Sleeps To Release New Single 'This Is The Six'". Metal Hammer!. 1 May 2012. Retrieved 13 June 2012.
  21. ^ Stickler, Jon (1 June 2012). "Download Festival Reveals Stage Times". Stereoboard. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
  22. ^ "House vs. Hurricane + While She Sleeps + Northlane + Heights". Loud. 17 May 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
  23. ^ a b "The Kerrang! Awards Fuelled By Relentless Energy Drink 2012 – The Winners!". Kerrang!. 7 June 2012. Retrieved 8 June 2012.
  24. ^ Taylor, Lawrence. "WHILE SHE SLEEPS - Flunky Ball" (Interview). Interviewed by Jan C. Müller. Summer Breeze Open Air, Dinkelsbühl, Germany: EMP Rockinvasion. Retrieved 23 February 2018.
  25. ^ "While She Sleeps' Loz Taylor To Undergo Throat Surgery". Rock Sound. 2 December 2013. Retrieved 30 April 2014.
  26. ^ "While She Sleeps To Give Away New Music On Saturday". Kerrang!. 26 October 2018. Retrieved 28 October 2018.
  27. ^ "While She Sleeps Unleash New Song and Video for "Haunt Me"". Altpress. 21 December 2018. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
  28. ^ "Architects Announce 2019 North American Tour Dates". Altpress. 14 January 2019. Retrieved 22 January 2019.
  29. ^ brownypaul (30 January 2019). "While She Sleeps release new song 'The Guilty Party'". Wall Of Sound. Retrieved 30 January 2019.
  30. ^ "While She Sleeps Release New Single, Fakers Plague". Kerrang!. 6 December 2019. Retrieved 6 December 2019.
  31. ^ "Blood Runs Deep: 23 Bands Who Shaped Punk". Alternative Press. 7 July 2008. pp. 110, 118.
  32. ^ "While She Sleeps Interview". Retrieved 31 December 2015.
  33. ^ "Album Review: While She Sleeps - This is the Six : Beyond The Watch". 30 January 2013. Retrieved 31 December 2015.
  34. ^ "Exclusive: While She Sleeps new video Australian premiere | News". 29 April 2013. Retrieved 31 December 2015.
  35. ^ "While She Sleeps 'The North stands For Nothing' Review". Metal Hammer. Future Publishing. 10 February 2011. Archived from the original on 7 April 2013. Retrieved 6 June 2012.
  36. ^ "While She Sleeps - This Is The Six | Album Reviews | Big Cheese Magazine - punk, metal and rock music news, reviews, interviews and more". Big Cheese Magazine. Retrieved 31 December 2015.
  37. ^ "The Impassioned Sounds of While She Sleeps". HighWire Daze. 14 July 2015. Retrieved 31 December 2015.
  38. ^ N/A, N/A. "Last.Fm While She Sleeps". Retrieved 17 March 2018.
  39. ^ "This Is The Six: While She Sleeps' Top Six Music Videos ... Part 1". Metal Hammer!. 14 May 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
  40. ^ "This Is The Six: While She Sleeps' Top Six Music Videos ... Part 2". Metal Hammer!. 15 May 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
  41. ^ "This Is The Six: While She Sleeps' Top Six Music Videos ... Part 3". Metal Hammer!. 16 May 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
  42. ^ "This Is The Six: While She Sleeps' Top Six Music Videos ... Part 4". Metal Hammer!. 17 May 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
  43. ^ "This Is The Six: While She Sleeps' Top Six Music Videos ... Part 5". Metal Hammer!. 18 May 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
  44. ^ "While She Sleeps picking up Best Album for 'You Are We' at #HMA18". Heavy Music Awards. 26 August 2018.
  45. ^ "20 Days of Sleeps [part 1]". YouTube. Retrieved 11 February 2019.
  46. ^ "20 Days of Sleeps [part 2]". YouTube. Retrieved 11 February 2019.
  47. ^ "20 Days of Sleeps [part 3]". YouTube. Retrieved 11 February 2019.
  48. ^ "So What? The Documentary". YouTube. Retrieved 18 February 2019.

External linksEdit