CLUB NIGHT: "MUTE / TRANCE"

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Club Night is a feral impulse realized out of Oakland’s DIY community. Their debut project, 2017’s Hell Ya, was defined by the cacophonous layering of instrumental sections supporting vocalist Josh Bertram’s distinctive style. His impressionistic lyrics and otherworldly delivery feels like it’s extending and retracting in waves lapping. The five songs given here are exciting and relentless. They feel like the anxiety of drinking too much coffee in the morning but having good intentions for how the rest of the day will go. The backing instrumentalization is frequently so immersive that it feels unnatural to concentrate on any single element but the overall result retains its humanity. This approach invites multiple listens and makes you want to listen to each song with specific instruments in mind.

A little over a year later, we have “Mute / Trance” - a two track single again through DIY heroes Tiny Engines. “Mute” opens similar to tracks like “Shear” and “Rally” with a daydream-inducing intro. Augmenting, narrative synths sound like a camera struggling to find focus as they lay the groundwork for Bertram’s vocals, ever distant and imposing. These two songs are different from Hell Ya as they leave some room to loosen up and play with spacing in the mix whereas previous efforts mostly consisted of dense layering. The benefit of this approach is the mosaic-like way it reaches seemingly impromptu motifs like the bright pinprick synths to close the track.

“Trance” transitions from dystopian vibe synths to Bertram at his most anthemic and disgusted, letting out an indignant groan before lamenting, ‘it’s so unthinkable.’ The use of volume dynamics add an emotional weight and grandeur with the subdued sections rising so quickly into charged reframes. The track closes with such a narrative, epic feel as drummer, Josiah Majetich, closes out what feels like a lot more than two tracks.

Check out Club Night and look up Tiny Engine’s cool collection of tapes, pretty please!

LISTEN HERE!

NATHAN WHITTLE