Be warned as you enter; the debut album by San Francisco’s Nite can drastically change your perspective of it depending on your mood. They’re a bit of a super-group, consisting of members from Satan’s Wrath, Dawnbringer, and High Spirits. Darkness Silence Mirror Flame is essentially heavy metal that resides to the traditional side, if not adding a dash of goth rock. But don’t be expecting another Idle Hands, because it’s not laid on as heavily, and the vocals are all blackened.
Naturally, you can expect loads of melancholy to surface, especially in the first half. A lot of this is quite soothing, but I’d be lying if I said the song construction itself was great. Thus, it’s a very “moment” driven album, where incredible spots are plentiful, but full-on banger tunes are scarce. “Lucifer” is a good example; the whinier licks are neat, but the entire track holds little weight. Regarding the mood from cover to cover, you’ll also find it to progressively lose its flavor.
Because of that, the back half yields songs that are a bit more threatening, such as “Ezelia.” Not only do the riffs feel more beastly, but the vocals have a higher level of gruff to them. I can also say that “Chains” has an incredible solo, being one of the few songs to really shred impressively. The calm simmer that’s backed by cymbal taps was a nice touch to follow that. You’ll find less cleanliness as things move forward due to the loss of sadder flavors.
All I can suggest is to give Darkness Silence Mirror Flame a couple of chances. I listened to this four or five times, and about half of them, I found it to be boring as all hell, and the other half things felt pretty solid. If black metal isn’t your thing, the vocals are going to be somewhat hard to get past. But musically, it’s nothing like that. Common for newer acts, Nite displays a lot of potential, but their debut isn’t what I’d call overly strong.
Darkness Silence Mirror Flame will be out on March 20th, 2020. Hear it digitally, or find a vinyl, CD, or T-shirt at their Bandcamp.