A shoegaze-rock fixture on the Cleveland music scene for years, Nights—comprised of vocalist Jenna Fournier, guitarist Frank Maraldo, drummer Chris Dalman and bassist Vincenzo Mauer—re-released their debut album “Whisper” on major record label Tragic Hero Records this week. Remixed by Jim Wirt, known for his work with Incubus and Fiona Apple, the record’s new mix is a crisp reimagining of the group’s dynamic sound.
Nowhere is this more obvious than in the album’s opening track and first single, “Walkaway.” Beginning with a bright, jangling guitar riff, the depth of this song’s mix opens it up immediately, unfolding into a shimmering soundscape. As it seamlessly flows in “Had A Dollar,” the listener will barely notice the transition, drawn into the track’s ambient psychedelia and haunting melody. Before long “Mouthful Of Sand” will stir the listener yet again with the strongest pop hook on the album.
Not unlike early Smashing Pumpkins or My Bloody Valentine, Nights’ sound rides on the delicate balancing act the band strikes between the wild sonic chaos of Maraldo’s guitar and Fournier’s ethereal falsetto. “Glow,” another album high point, highlights this interplay, driven from the beginning by a pulsing bass line from Mauer and propelled by Dalman’s cascading drums.
The dreamy “Lullaby” closes the record in a grand fashion, providing a shorter counterpoint to some of the album’s longer cuts as it shifts from soothing pop to aggressive guitar-rock seamlessly. In many ways, it encapsulates the appeal of “Whisper” as one of the strongest debuts from the Cleveland music scene in years.
Nights will celebrate the re-release of “Whisper” at the Detroit Avenue Happy Dog on Saturday, Sept. 26. Vinyl and other format options of the album are available for pre-order from Tragic Hero’s website. Included with each purchase is a download of the exclusive 13-minute bonus track “With Bated Breath.”
Release Date: Sept. 25, 2015