Man, these guys just keep getting better. Hidden Pictures’ Synchronized Sleeping is an album to love. It’s blisteringly honest in unexpected places, and songwriter Richard Gintowt’s lyrics have the harsh, incisive cut of Ben Gibbard, without the sentimental sap. Hidden Pictures’ warm and fuzzy melodies go down like spoonfuls of sticky brown sugar, but Gintowt’s songs are about sacrifice: working through the tough spots in long relationships, putting on a happy face, weighing the good against the bad. They’re also slyly cynical. Here’s modern romance, encapsulated on “Pretty Good Thing”: Consider my faith renewed/And gone are my
frozen foods/So I can make room for you. Is there a sweeter sentiment?