For a band that started out as a fake MySpace page, Cloud Nothings have come a long way in just five years.
After moving from the lo-fi pop of their self-titled 2011 release to the heavy, no-holds barred rock on Attack On Memory, Dylan Baldi and co have again developed and refined their sound on Here And Nowhere Else, delving into the best elements of their previous releases.
There’s the catchy, melodic tinge of Cloud Nothings’ older material, along with the grungy, punk, and instrumentally bombastic elements of Attack On Memory. Baldi’s raspy, strained vocals are still prominent, but there’s also more complex and intricate guitar work and TJ Duke’s basslines to give a more interesting backdrop.
‘Now Hear In’ provides a frantic, rushed, but somehow controlled opening before another impossibly catchy chorus on ‘Quieter Today’. The bass plays a much more important role, especially on the brilliant ‘Psychic Trauma’.
Cloud Nothings prove that they’re a band that can constantly develop and transform their sound enough to remain interesting, but never too drastically to the point where they completely offside their fans.
It only goes for half an hour, but there isn’t one wasted second on the album.
‘Pattern Walks’ is the eight-minute centrepiece of the record, starting slowly and relaxed before an increasingly distorted guitar descends into a swirling wall of noise. Jason Gerycz’s pounding drums brings the song back from the abyss and into a driving, energetic ride, while the singer’s chanted vocals become just another instrument in the hazy, complex sound.
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While Attack On Memory may have seemed like a somewhat drastic, unexpected shift for the Cleveland-based three-piece, Here And Nowhere Else is a logical and cohesive development of the band’s sound. It’s an album that shows the musicians continually adapting and polishing their aesthetic, with intriguing and thoroughly enjoyable results.
Listen to ‘I’m Not Part Of Me’ from Here And Nowhere Else here: