The word about Night Demon really ramped up in 2014 while they were the direct support for a massive North American tour with heavy metal icons Raven. So by the time their 2015 debut LP ‘Curse of the Damned’ dropped, Night Demon had already begun building a reputation that preceded them. Having a tangible studio LP coupled with their consistent nightly peak-level live performances, Night Demon absolutely set their own exceptionally high standard.
The band essentially established a ‘sound’ with their 2015 debut LP ‘Curse of the Damned’, and now ‘Darkness Remains’ has effectively begun galvanizing that sound. Apparently Night Demon knows how to produce the proverbial lightning in a bottle.
The chosen lead single/album opener—“Welcome to the Night”—rides a great line between where the vibe of ‘Curse…’ left off and ‘Darkness Remains’ picks up. An ominously harmonized guitar melody fades in, building up to a climactic crescendo which unleashes a full-on, forward pummeling sonic charge with a tough-as-leather drive that leads into a bridge delivered with a hook carried by attention-grabbing vocal harmonies that segues into a staunch, decisive chorus that lingers in the mind well after the track ends; a vast arsenal of elements that the band is fast learning to utilize at full potential.“Hallowed Ground” keep the pace while it helps blend the transition. When they fluctuate with the down-tempo shift of “Stranger In the Room,” then answer back with a 180° turn around with “Life on the Run,” the album takes off and drives like an ’84 Z28, wide open. As the end of the album draws nigh, rather than wrangle everything in and tie it up with burner to close out with, they venture into new territory with “Flight of the Manticore”—a stellar instrumental—and the title track, which takes the band into new territory by producing a haunting atmosphere with a tense creepiness driven home by the sound of Jarvis’s vocals seeming as if they were delivered from a sinister, unseen dimension of Oblivion’ that feels just out of reach, but impossible see. ‘Darkness Remains’ proves Night Demon’s ability to level up on musicianship, songwriting, atmosphere and their ability to travel and experiment with the full sonic spectrum however they choose.
Though Night Demon has a dominating sound presence on the recording, they manage to retain a surprising rawness. There’s no hiding behind studio tricks or overdubs to bolster the overall effect. They come together in the studio the same way their live shows play, they operate as a true trio, with each person carrying their weight. A band with that kind of consistency, seemingly endless stamina on the road, pin-up focus on their targets, and the limitless determination reach them, is bound for big things. ‘Darkness Remains’ is only the second LP for Night Demon, so they’re really just getting started.