I feel like every package I get from Snappy Little Numbers is pure gold. Seriously, every release they have sent me to review has been an instant favorite so let’s see if Night Battles’ ‘Year of No Days’ continues with that trend!
Night Battles wastes no time and jumps right in with “Sunyata”. The opening of this first track is a bit eerie and is definitely a slow burn type of intro that I’m not usually super fond of because of my ADD and my need for energy and power in music but there was something about this opener that I found myself completely captivated by. You could feel it grow but it wasn’t a solid order of guitar, bass, drums, and then finally vocals… it was more of a swirling sense of growth that lasted all the way through this nearly eight-minute-long song. I’ll be honest, this track was a bit longer than I typically go for but, again, somehow Night Battles had me completely captivated all the way through.
The growth throughout “Sunyata” blended into “Summer of Loathe” nicely. I was a bit caught off guard by some almost surf-rock-styled guitars at the beginning of the track but then I realized that this would be a theme throughout ‘Year of No Days’. Dark and moody but with surprises sprinkled throughout the journey, I could feel myself getting excited just thinking about it. Another fairly lengthy track, “Summer Of Loathe” again kept me completely captivated just with the wonder as to what this band would throw into the track. Even though the vocals remain dark and very post-punk, there are some super cool intricacies and embellishments done by the vocals that I found myself wanting more of throughout this song.
“Flat On My Back” was an instant favorite of mine due to the amount of power that comes with the song. Night Battles doesn’t hold back and they blast you with sound and power right off the bat on this track while keeping with their very dark and moody overall vibe. Even with Night Battle’s signature moodiness and darkness, there are moments of light throughout this track that kept it moving all too quickly and, before I knew it, “Sub Rosa” had taken over my speakers. Much like “Flat On My Back”, this track commands your attention right away and has an undeniable sense of power to it. There’s something just a bit more “standard” about the song structure of this track that I appreciated as the post-punk scene has always been a bit tough for me to understand but, at the same time, this track is clearly the creative genius of Night Battles. I love that balance and how easily Night Battles handles it.
The title of “White Light/Black Dreams” had me thinking that that’s honestly the best way to describe Night Battles. Beyond just this song, the entire album seems to have these moments of white light within black dreams. I was lost in this idea but was quickly pulled out of my own head by this track. There is something about the word choice and the delivery of said words that had me absolutely captivated. This was another instant favorite of mine and a track that I just couldn’t get enough of so I had to listen to it again before moving onto “Crooked Hours”. This is another track that had me stuck (let’s be honest, this entire album had me stuck). Another song with a bit more of a classic song structure, I found myself wondering if this was another favorite of mine or not. Although another solid track, this one just didn’t hit as hard for me as “White Light/Black Dreams” did. There does seem to be a bit more emotion in the vocals even though they remain dark and almost creepy at times.
“King Of Nothing” brings an almost playful feeling to this album that I instantly wish I would have had more of previously but I also liked that the band was just now throwing this vibe into the mix. Don’t get me wrong, this song is still distinctively that of Night Battles but there’s just a bit more of that “White Light” in this song that made it feel ever so slightly whimsical. Compared to anything else I listen to, this is still a dark and moody track but, again, in the setting of ‘Year of No Days’…well, you get it.
Ending this super powerful album is “Hungry Ghost”. Although it’s the shortest track on the album at just three and a half minutes, it absolutely packs a punch. From the power in the instrumentation to the angsty word choice and the power that comes with those words, this track continued to have me in the palm of Night Battles’ hand until the bitter end.
Snappy Little Numbers may have thrown me for a loop with this one as it’s definitely a style of music that I don’t know much about but that doesn’t mean their streak of sending me amazing music is over. Night Battles’ sound is powerful and captivating to a fault. I will gladly be calling this one a new favorite of mine for the foreseeable future.
My Favorite Track(s): “Flat On My Back”; “White Light/Black Dreams”
For Fans Of: Pure Power; Walls of Sound
Mosh-ability: 6 out of 10
What My Cats Thought Of It: Artie slept on the couch; Autumn slept upstairs
How Badly I Want To See This Performed Live: 7 out of 10
My Overall Rating: 7.8 out of 10
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