Night
High Tides – Distant Skies

It seems inevitable that by the end of every year, we’re all grateful to be moving on… uh, wait, this seems awfully familiar…

Now is a good time to cozy up to the familiar sounds of yesteryear… man, why do I feel like I’ve already done this? Why is a band called Night boasting a backbone of traditional heavy metal and rock giving me such déjà vu?

… OH… Uh, well, this is awkward

*Ahem* Uh, ok… Sweden’s Night, not to be confused with San Fancisco’s Nite, is here to offer up a slab of equally nostalgic, palate-cleansing traditional heavy metal and classic rock-inspired goodness that plays like a homemade mixtape of your favorite headbangers and air-guitar-solo-inspiring rockers of the 70s and 80s, and it is an absolutely LOVELY break from the usual day-to-day barrage of extreme metal I normally berate myself with.

If you’d never seen Dazed and Confused and someone told you High Tides – Distant Skies was its soundtrack, you’d honestly have little reason to doubt it. Night’s apparently meticulous obsession to recreate the sounds, feel and tone of late-70s rock and heavy metal carries an authenticity that most other bands paying homage to that era of music struggle to fully achieve. It’s like the best cover band you’ve ever heard risking it all and playing their own songs, only to find out that they’re actually fucking awesome. Tracks like the Dire Straits-inspired “Crimson Past” or shades-of-Steve Miller Band “Shadow gold” make me want to buy a Trans-Am and cruise down main street on a summer night, while prog rock burners “Falling in the Black” and “Under the Moonlight Sky,” or the Yes-inspired “Lost in a Dream” have me begging for an Astro van complete with the most epic side panel mural you’ve ever seen (a lightning bolt-throwing, dragon-riding wizard immediately comes to my mind. Your own imaginations may vary).

The band is also more than capable of pulling off straight up, leather-clad heavy metal ala Saxon or Anvil – just turn to “Burning Sky,” “Give Me to the Night,” or standout “Here on my Own” for a healthy dose of rumbling NWOBHM goodness – but personally, I find Night is at their best when they’re riding somewhere in the middle of Judas Priest and Foghat. Album highlights “Falling in the Black” and “Running Away” fall into that sweet Molly Hatchet/Thin Lizzy territory of pure rock-out, good time vibes, and beer-swigging headbanging that makes me yearn for a night spent with good friends and bad decisions.

Listening to this album on my phone with Bluetooth headphones right now seems ENTIRELY wrong. This needs to be on 8-track cassette or vinyl to get the full effect, or at the VERY least playing on an original Sony Walkman through shitty, foam-covered headphones. 2020 may be a real shitshow for a lot of things, but it turns out it’s REALLY good for bands named any variation of the word “Night” who play some form of vintage heavy metalnot a development I would have ever predicted, but I’m grateful for it! These nostalgic swedes are a hell of a lot of fun. Now I just need an empty field, a couple kegs, and a fleet of Chevy SSes, Ford Coupes and Oldsmobile Vistas to complete the illusion. Alriiiiiiiiiight, alriiiiiiiiiight, alr… 

No… Stop… Don’t be that guy.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Steve K
August 12th, 2020

Comments

  1. Commented by: Curtis Dewar

    I just wanted to say thanks for posting the review! It is greatly appreciated :)


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