D.C. Rockers The Nighttime Adventure Society Say Goodbye With a Heartfelt EP, ‘Chapter Three: The Last Chapter’
Chapter Three: The Last Chapter is, as advertised, the final entry from D.C. rockers The Nighttime Adventure Society. “I always wanted to end Nighttime with something — rather than just fizzle out,” said lead songwriter, guitarist and vocalist Laura Zax.
Nighttime covers quite a bit of ground over the course of nearly 15 minutes on Chapter Three, all of it worthy of a band seeking an exit with a bang. “Good Enough Is Enough” is a call back to the heyday of The Shins-style chamber pop, replete with horns and a massive backing chorus. On the other side of the spectrum bursts in “Better Off Hanging On,” an early aughts-type indie rock song that uses rollicking drums and fuzzy guitar licks.
Aside from the musicianship, the real draw of Chapter Three is Zax’s powerful and personal storytelling. “I would say my songs for this project overall have been, by and large, confessional,” she said. “A sort of musical diary for my 20s, a decade in which I first fell in love, discovered I was queer, had my heart broken, tried to figure out a career path, [and] questioned my values.”
The EP builds steadily to the climactic finale on the crushing “Last Song.” A stripped-down song about introducing a same-sex love to unaccepting parents, “Last Song” dances around its subject without speaking its name. “I guess I thought they already knew / ‘Cus they caught us kissing in your childhood room,” Zax lilts softly.
While the rest of Chapter Three seems to glaze over the narrator’s own feelings in favor of describing someone else’s, Zax offers a skeleton key on “Last Song”: “You don’t think that I care / This thing you’re going through / Don’t you realize this thing’s happening to me too?” Muted, pained and resolute, “Last Song” is a beautiful send off.
On Saturday, The Nighttime Adventure Society will have a proper send off and EP release show at newly-opened venue Union Stage. “It should be one of our best, liveliest, most vibrant, (and apparently coldest) shows ever.”