REVIEW: Pistols At Dawn — Nocturnal Youth (EP)
In regards to Atlanta, Georgia, and the music industry, most people would knee-jerk a reaction related to the immense rap movement that has circulated throughout the city almost since the genre’s inception; with famed multi-hyphenate rapper Childish Gambino, also known as Donald Glover, even going so far as to release a show under the name “Atlanta” based around rap culture, you’d be hard-pressed to consider any other genre when in conversation about the city’s musical background. Still, the city itself lives and breathes all kinds of art and musical culture, from being a mainstay for production on Marvel films to birthing such rock acts like Mastodon and Sevendust; formed in the city in 2015, Pistols At Dawn is aiming to be the next rock act to take the world by storm while still keeping Atlanta, Georgia on their sleeves.
OFFICIAL WEBSITE: https://www.pistolsatdawnband.com/
Following up a slew of singles released over the last year, Pistols At Dawn returns with a new EP under the enigmatically packaged Nocturnal Youth; decorated with an army of skeletons on its cover, the backs of their heads donning barcodes, the art on display is undeniably gorgeous and sets the tone for this heavier outing for the band. The four-track EP opens with “Voices,” and the introduction to the project further paints the picture of the album’s tone incredibly well. There’s no easing into the rock genre as Pistols At Dawn chooses to rip it off like a band-aid and explode onto the scene.
Listeners will be familiar with the track as the first two songs on the EP have seen releases as singles, but the placement of it as an opening track gives “Voices” a great deal of depth and pacing. With “Crown,” the other single released before the EP, the tone continues and offers a heavy damning of the current popular mindset regarding idolization; the song’s sharp lyrics feel pointed not only in the political sense but at the overall sense of ignorance and apathy that permeates the cultural norm. “Now Is the Time” doubles down on such sentiments by calling to action the band’s fans both old and new, asking them to wake up and take action. The song works in succession with its predecessors to give the EP a distinctly concise shape and pace. Nocturnal Youth closes with “Gone Black,” the arguable standout of the project due to its unparalleled bravado and certainty within its closure of themes and the sounds experimented on within the EP.
Atlanta is a place of great diversity and unique perspectives compared to what one living outside of the South might project onto the area, and Pistols At Dawn feels primed to further the reach of the artistic output coming out of such an area. The reach of Nocturnal Youth and its songs feels well-established enough to go the distance, and with the band performing at the top of their game, such success feels like an inevitability. Nocturnal Youth raises the question not of how or why, but when for Pistols At Dawn. After hearing the EP, I can easily argue that the when is now, so buckle up.