Search Results for "Nightmarathons"

Album Review: Nightmarathons – “Missing Parts”

As a reviewer, I go into every album with the hope of liking it. It’s easy to forget, that behind the paragraphs, there are people. We have thoughts, feelings, and ideas regarding what makes music great, what makes it special. Punk rock can be analyzed both objectively and subjectively—I can break down the lyrics, but I can also talk about how they make me feel. I think the most effective recommendations hang on a merging of the objective and subjective: what are they doing,  how does it work, and what does it make me feel?

Nightmarathons from Pittsburgh had me considering a lot of these questions. Missing Parts is their debut album, released by A-F Records—who have, in the last couple years, positioned themselves as one of our most exciting contemporary punk labels. Nightmarathons play the sort of melodic punk that I can’t help but keep returning to, time and time again. Think: The Menzingers, Dead Bars, Elway, Nothington and you’re on the right track. Their band bio throws a curveball into the mix, an angle that seeks to invigorate and intrigue: “Nightmarathons melds varying punk, post punk, and first-wave emo influences to create their own unique take on melodic punk rock music.”

First-wave emo? Like Embrace, Rites of Spring? That sounds awesome. That sounds like a fresh take on punk’s most muscular contemporary genre. But why do my words feel so loaded? Why am I talking about the difficulty of reviewing when I should be talking about Missing Parts greatness? Because objectivity and subjectivity do not always align. For me, this is one of those cases. Nightmarathons have a great logline and Missing Parts is as competent a debut as any—but more often than not, it just doesn’t stick.

Which is why I hate giving star reviews. Who can boil down a work of art to a numeric system? An album can do ten things right and three things wrong, but if the ten good are ten great, the three get lost in the mix and vice versa. No five-star album is perfect and no one-star album is completely imperfect, they’re just different ratios of good and bad, weighted by importance by some schmuck with a keyboard. This is my way of saying that Nightmarathons does most things right, leaving me with the question: is it enough?

Missing Parts is an album of anthems. Across its runtime, there are prime moments for screaming along, jittery moments before choruses where you can fully expect to be swept up by the rhythm of a crowd. This is the sort of punk rock that takes a work week to appreciate. It takes a full week of saying yes, sir and no, sir—until you’re looking at the clock and thinking about the last five minutes of your Friday and watching the minutes drip away so slow and thick they might as well be honey. And then, when you’re released, you go to the show. You hear these downbeat anthems, you dance and sing and drink way too much and you let everything out in a silly, sad bout of catharsis. We laugh at all the modern punk cliches, but it describes Nightmarathons’ melodic punk perfectly. This is music meant as an antidote to whatever ails you. If you look around, you might realize Nightmarathons aren’t alone in this approach.

The songs on Missing Parts, for the first listen, entirely passed me by. I was looking for hooks, looking for something to etch itself into my memory, and I was left with empty hands. But, repetition breeds familiarity and soon, on my fourth or fifth listen, I realized that there was actually some admirable songwriting on Missing Parts. Songs like “Closer,” with its rousing chorus of, “Take a bow, disappear/ turn my back, so insincere!” became an earworm with time. “Cull Your Heart,” with its thick and fuzzy guitar lines makes good on Nightmarathons’ promise of melding first-wave emo with melodic punk. The band becomes more intense and immediate as the album continues with “Honor System.” “Simple,” with its languid pace and earnest delivery shows a diversity of sound that passed me by entirely at first.

Nightmarathons is a lot of things, but to call Missing Parts anything but a grower would be misleading. I ended up liking this album a lot more than I originally thought, but the problems I had with it on the first listen are the same I had on the tenth: a relative lack of boldness. Missing Parts loses itself in a lot of similar sounding songs that take a fair amount of objective observation to decipher from their surroundings. This is not to say they are not good songs, but that they lack immediacy and verve. These songs—or, as we established earlier, anthems—should roll out with a gut punch. They should sound strong and singular, but more often than not, they roll by like a black car on a black night with broken headlights. Missing Parts is a good album full of good songs that take too much objectivity to be great.

And that’s why the ratio is all kinds of fucked up. Nightmarathons don’t do much wrong, but the one thing that doesn’t work for me is like a blanket that muffles the entire album. It’s the emotional hook—that feeling of yeah, I get that—that doesn’t deliver until all other choices have been considered. I’m out here looking for the mirror image—the subjective hook front and center, the thing that pulls you in and makes you comb through the music to support whatever intangible feelings it gives you.

If we’re being fair though, I can’t deny that Nightmarathons did grow on me. In time, I found myself recognizing songs and remembering snippets of lyrics, but ultimately: the subjective recognition only took me so far, and regrettably much too late. Missing Parts is a wildly competent album that will surely have its devout followers, but as with anything—if it doesn’t catch you hard, it might not catch you at all.



Nightmarathons premiere another new song ‘Reset”‘

Pittsburgh’s Nightmarathons are premiering another new song from their upcoming release Missing Parts, out March 29th on A-F Records. The song is streaming below and is sounding perhaps even stronger than the other songs put out so far. This bodes very well for the album.

Nightmarathons last release was their self-titled EP in 2017.



Nightmarathons (melodic punk) premiere new song ‘Waiting Room’

Nightmarathons, a punk rock band from Pittsburgh, are premiering the first song via The Alternative. The band features Chris Stowe, who co-runs A-F Records with the band Anti Flag. Chris Number 2 of Anti Flag produced the song ‘Waiting Room’ which will be on the album ‘Missing’ out March 29th via A-F Records.

Nightmarathons, draw influence from Piebald and Hot Water Music. You can hear the song streaming below.



Nightmarathons (Punk, Pittsburgh, PA) stream “Closer” from forthcoming full length album

Nightmarathons have announced that they will release their debut album “Missing Parts” on March 29 via A-F Records. The band have released “Closer” from the album following a premiere at BrooklynVegan.

The album was produced by Chris #2 of Anti-Flag (and White Wives) and comes ahead of shows in Chicago, Seattle, Oakland, San Francisco, San Diego, Las Vegas, Denver, Cleveland, and more. You can check out the track and preorder the release using the player below.



Nightmarathons (melodic punk) Stream New Single “Estimate”

Pittsburgh melodic punk act Nightmarathons are streaming their latest single. The track is titled “Estimate” and has been released by A-F Records. It’s the first new music from the four-piece since their self-titled EP, which was released in 2017.

You can listen to “Estimate” below.



Nightmarathons (punk) announce Midwest tour

Steel city punk rockers Nightmarathons are heading out on a short Midwest tour in support of their latest release and you can check out the dates and locations below.

The band’s self titled EP was released in May via A-F Records.



DS Exclusive: Nightmarathons (Punk) Premiere New Music Video For “Arrogance”

Steel City punks, Nightmarathons sure have been busy during their formative months! Shortly after forming in late 2016, the four piece released their debut, self-titled EP via Pittsburgh purveyors of punk A-F Records. Now, just a few weeks later, the boys are back with a new music video to celebrate the release of special vinyl pressings of the freshman effort (pre-order here). Melding varying punk genres like post punk, first-wave emo they create their own unique take on melodic punk rock music. But, don’t take our word for it, belly up to the bar and get to know the guys for yourselves in the exclusive premiere of “Arrogance”, below!


Nightmarathons (Punk) stream self titled EP

Pittsburgh punk rock four piece, Nightmarathons, are streaming their self titled EP via New Noise here.

The release will be available May 5th, through A-F Records.



Pittsburgh Punks Nightmarathons stream new track “Seeping” from upcoming EP

Nightmarathons have released a second track from their upcoming debut EP on A-F Records.

You can stream the new track here, and also check out “Damascus” at their bandcamp page.

I’m definitely looking forward to seeing these guys at the Fest.