Fans stay attached to energetic punk music for a reason, and Night Birds encapsulate said reason perfectly on their new album, Roll Credits, out now via Fat Wreck Chords. The band proves energetic, mindfully furious, and in the end, even invitingly irreverent. Here, there’s no respect paid to musical norms, societal tastes, or biases from any corner of the world at large, and as any fan of angsty heavy music will tell you, that’s a wonderful thing.
The band takes the listener on a path that, for any and all talk about bucking norms and traditions, remains engaging. Through the chaos and noise, the band feels like they’re keeping a tight hold on operations which lets their work remain focused and more pointed than it might be otherwise. They’ve tapped into a vein of musical lifeblood here and plopped a spigot on the hole and set up a bar. Now, it’s just up to the listener to come and drink.
The band’s vibes skew relaxed in the midst of their spastic musical motions. They’re not shooting the listener in the arm with adrenaline; the trip provided by their new record proves significantly more chill, really. There’s a sense of the listener finding themselves atop a wave instead of struggling to survive and treading water in a more harried environment beneath the surface. Punk and chilled out “surf” vibes often go together anyway, so the band’s pairing works well. The combination comes in a slickly produced package that only pushes in the band’s direction.
Instead of skewing endlessly political like a cliche punk band, in their unique presentation, Night Birds have crafted and presented something more personal, which again helps Roll Credits stick. There’s a sense that instead of lofty concepts remaining the center of attention throughout the work, we, the listeners and the band members, too are the focus. They’ve cut to why tons of us jumped into this music in the first place, and they’re keeping the wave going with Roll Credits while concurrently forging their own direction. The album quickly proves a welcome addition to the panoply of modern, and unique, punk.