“Nightingale Floors” by Rogue Wave
Several years ago, Rogue Wave premiered a documentary that offered a peek into drummer Pat Spurgeon’s life on the road as he underwent a kidney transplant and constant blood transfusions. It was, well, quite harrowing to see a young band handle unglamorous health issues outside the realm of typical rocker ailments—drug abuse and the like—but the resilient Rogue Wave rolled onward, playing shows across the country.
This year’s Nightingale Floors struggle again. Following the passing of vocalist/guitarist Zach Schwartz (or, Zach Rogue)’s father, Nightingale Floors wildly traverses the spectrum of human emotion before and after tragedy. Through grief, anger, bitterness, vulnerability, and gradual acceptance, Rogue comes to terms with the aftermath of the acute visceral scoring that is the departing of someone deeply loved.
However, this album, which features support from members of Peter Wolf Crier and Sea of Bees as well as other touring musicians, is by no means one-dimensional. As in life, emotions spill into other spaces of subsistence—upbeat songs bend tonally awry just as somber dirges deviate towards a serene complacency. What Rogue Wave leaves us with is effusive confessional turmoil—beautiful in its own feverish chaos.