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Black Nite Crash – Photo Credit: Tiffany Smith
Great music is often made in unconventional ways, and Black Nite Crash have never had a conventional approach to their recording career. Their history stretches back eighteen years, encompassing a revolving cast of characters to rival the Brian Jonestown Massacre or the Damned, and they’ve left in their wake a string of catchy records made on a shoestring budget, all while navigating the natural rhythms of a hard-working band with many members passing through the ranks, several now parenting when they aren’t rocking, finally culminating in this moment with their latest EP, Colony Drive.
The current line-up, as with previous versions, coalesced around frontman/guitarist Jim Biggs (the only steady part of BNC’s tumultuous history) over the last several years of regular gigging and ongoing recording projects. The recording of this EP initially came about as the product of a fan-favorite selection during the Seattle record label festival Channel Fest, with the band’s label, Neon Sigh, awarded best label by voters; the prize was free studio time.
The recording commenced only to see some of the line up changes that have become a familiar part of the band’s lore woven in to the making of the EP, as guitarist Scott Kennedy and keyboardist/vocalist Izzy Dickey-Thomas make their final recorded appearances with the band, while drummer Tony Zuniga and guitarists Sharim Johnson and Claire Tucker make their first contributions on record.
Bassist Jasun Hadaway, the second longest serving member of Black Nite Crash at eleven years, not only holds down the low end, but also created the video for the EP’s title track, “Colony Drive.”
Big Takeover is pleased to host the premiere of the vibrant and dynamic video for “Colony Drive” today.
The song itself was born of the past, musically connected to a love of aggressive pop songs buried below layers of noisy guitar, exemplified in the music of bands like Hüsker Dü and My Bloody Valentine; the lyrics arise from the memories of growing up somewhere that’s nowhere and the underlying, and seemingly endless, feeling of suburban ennui that accompanies the experience; the need to get up, get out and move on, and the things that can keep holding us in place or pulling us back to a past best left behind.
The music video reflects that need to move, to get away, peering back through the fuzzy, dream-like window of memory. The clip commences with a vintage image of a radio being turned on and then slides hazily into a stream of overlapping footage of the band performing onstage and outdoor scenes of wide open spaces flying by; of train cars rolling down the track, far away mesas and close-up scrub brush under a bright blue sky. Bustling city streets under the glow of neon lights at night are also featured, contrasting with the natural landscape visuals.
The rest of the songs on the EP pulse with an energy that’s fueled by discontent and disillusionment, sometimes of a more romantic nature (on “She” and “Waiting for Her”), and others of a more socio-political kind (lead single “Wrong”).
The hammering rhythm section is nuanced and strong, driving ahead as the guitar leads wind in and around each other in a delicate but clamorous dance through fuzzed out walls of noise, four guitarists dueling through a changing of the guard in the band.
Black Nite Crash are already at work on their follow-up album(s), and are more than ready to start playing live again when conditions are safe for all. In the meantime, the EP, along with the rest of the band’s catalog, is available via Bandcamp and on Neon Sigh Records.
The Colony Drive EP was recorded by Garrett Reynolds, mixed by Peter Marchese (Voyager One) and long-time band collaborator/auxiliary member Matt Brown (Trespassers William), and mastered by Adam Straney at Breakpoint Mastering.