Editor’s Note: The Albumism staff has selected what we believe to be 50 fantastic first solo albums recorded by artists who departed—or simply took a temporary hiatus from—their respective groups, representing a varied cross-section of genres, styles and time periods. Click “Next Album” below to explore each album or view the full album index here.
FRANK TURNER | Sleep Is For The Week
Xtra Mile (2007)
Selected by Chris Powers
If anyone doubts the limitless and expansive nature of what punk rock can sound like, all they need to do is to look to the rise of Frank Turner as one of the most beloved figures in the scene. A gigantic Englishman who has a fondness for the steel guitars of Nashville, Turner writes folky songs that closely examine his past as an active punk rocker and allows us to journey with him to find meaning through all his experiences.
After his hardcore group Million Dead ceased to be, Turner released his full length debut album Sleep Is For The Week and immediately established what his solo work would be like up to this very day: introspective and gentle songs where he shares personal interactions and experiences with us that make it seem like he is opening himself up to us to become friends.
Opening track “The Real Damage” is a classic Frank Turner tale about reflecting on a boozy and wasted weekend, and “Worse Things Happen At Sea” puts us in a difficult and heartbreaking position to experience a romantic breakup in real time. The earnest and inviting nature of these songs are without a doubt the reason why Turner has become as popular as he has, because who hasn’t experienced any of these things? Who hasn’t wished they had an emotionally in-tune friend to share these feelings with and feel like they understand you at that level?
That is the genius of Frank Turner’s work. His catchy and emotionally honest folk songs cover a large range of the happiness and sadness that we experience, and his warm presence makes it seem like we have a close friend living in the record.
Frank Turner’s records would continue to get more ambitious and energetic, but Sleep Is For The Week proves to be a gentle debut of a sound that was a departure from his previous work and will continue to connect with a countless amount of fans.