[28 May 2008]
PopMatters Contributing Editor
The first thing you think of when you hear the guitar tone on the debut EP by Portland, Oregon’s The Days the Nights is the swaggering, sultry desert rock of Queens of the Stone Age, and judging by the raucous “Her Name Is Alice”, the influence of Josh Homme and Co. is more than a little obvious, but it doesn’t take very long for this five-track, 15-minute CD to show that this quintet is capable of much more than effectively replicating one of the best hard rock acts around. Straddling stoner rock, the pop-oriented side of late ‘90s alternative, and even hardcore, the versatility The Days the Nights shows is admirable, and at times, downright shocking. “Greenlight” is a first-rate blue-collar rocker that’s not afraid to stress melody, “You Should Ask Yourself” is infused with the kind of effervescent pop hooks that many young American hard rock bands are reluctant to attempt, while the lead riff in “Let’s Start a Riot” screams late ‘80s sleaze metal before being overtaken by soaring lead vocals in the chorus. And if that wasn’t enough, there’s enough post-hardcore-meets-Southern-rawk muscle in “One Last Kiss” to give Every Time I Die a run for their money. Someone please sign these guys.