Published Jan 04, 2019After unveiling Toronto's Nightwell to the world less than two years ago via the premiere of "Bloom," it's only appropriate that we're re-introducing the world to the quintet — now with a new singer. The debut of Jason Emsallem (formerly of math rockers Pfloog) comes in the video for "Drive."
The new frontman adds more dynamics to the emo band's sound, resulting in a more upbeat sound than the aforementioned tune, noticeably downplaying the melancholic grunge influence. It still manages to approximate the bands we referenced last time (Balance and Composure and Title Fight), but given that they drifted sonically before breaking up or fading away, respectively, it feels that much more crucial. Turnover would have been a more accurate touchstone for the sound if they hadn't spaced out on their latest couple LPs, but the still rocking Citizen are closest.
All of which is to say they're in good company and, even more impressive, they manage to stay on par with these scene mainstays.
Of course the lyrics are an important part of any emo song, but we'll let Emsallem handle the explanation of his words.
"It's all in the name: 'Drive.' It just sets a tone for the entire track of trying to find an escape. It describes the kind of feeling you get when you've got a lot on your mind and you're just trying to get away from it all. Just as in the song, I'm trying to avoid a really important argument that has to happen and it's something that has been weighing hard on my mind. The problem is everyone always tries to numb their frustrations. Everyone has their vices to help them deal with difficult times in life, rather than addressing the problem head on. Driving is the distraction, the escape we choose when we physically need to get away from our thoughts and feelings. The song is about driving with no destination, hopeful for something to change our current circumstances or just that our issues will take care of themselves while we're on the road. This however, may not lead to best outcome but sometimes all you can do is try to move on, try to go forward, and more simply, just drive."
Refamiliarize yourself with Nightwell via the video in the player below.