11 Songs, 28 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Dylan Baldi’s Cloud Nothings project was born in his parents’ basement not so long ago, where he made pop music shrouded in velvety haze. This, his first full-length recording made in a proper studio, is a surprise on several levels: Baldi’s not afraid to peel away the layers and let the listener soak in his youthful, imperfect voice (it’s stronger than past efforts indicated), and there’s a refreshing spirit and energy here that keeps Cloud Nothings moving briskly through to the end. The white-hot “Understand At All” and “Heartbeat” channel the late and much-missed Jay Reatard, while the charmingly titled “You’re Not That Good At Anything” and the sweetly melodic, Buzzcockian “Nothing’s Wrong” and “Been Through” have dangerously sticky hooks. The guitars and bass pulse with power-pop goodness, and the drums deliver tidy, spot-on punches. Tunes like the heart-tugging “Should Have” and the punky, deliriously effervescent “Rock” show Cloud Nothings moving in a most excellent direction.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Dylan Baldi’s Cloud Nothings project was born in his parents’ basement not so long ago, where he made pop music shrouded in velvety haze. This, his first full-length recording made in a proper studio, is a surprise on several levels: Baldi’s not afraid to peel away the layers and let the listener soak in his youthful, imperfect voice (it’s stronger than past efforts indicated), and there’s a refreshing spirit and energy here that keeps Cloud Nothings moving briskly through to the end. The white-hot “Understand At All” and “Heartbeat” channel the late and much-missed Jay Reatard, while the charmingly titled “You’re Not That Good At Anything” and the sweetly melodic, Buzzcockian “Nothing’s Wrong” and “Been Through” have dangerously sticky hooks. The guitars and bass pulse with power-pop goodness, and the drums deliver tidy, spot-on punches. Tunes like the heart-tugging “Should Have” and the punky, deliriously effervescent “Rock” show Cloud Nothings moving in a most excellent direction.

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3:09
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2:36
3:26
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3:09

About Cloud Nothings

Cloud Nothings' prolific lo-fi pop is the brainchild of Dylan Baldi, a Cleveland, Ohio native who was still in his teens when the buzz about his music started. Baldi was majoring in audio recording at college when he dropped out to focus on the music he was making at home. After a few months, he uploaded the songs "Hey Cool Kid" and "Whaddaya Wanna Know" to his MySpace page, which led to gigs with Woods and Real Estate, and 2010 singles released via Group Tightener and Old Flame Records. That year, Cloud Nothings also released a split cassette with Campfires and the Turning On EP. On the strength of all this music, Baldi signed to Carpark in the U.S. and to Wichita Records in the U.K.; Turning On was reissued with selected tracks from his other singles.

Along with dates with Wavves, Titus Andronicus, and Best Coast, Baldi began work on Cloud Nothings' full-length debut in Baltimore, Maryland's Copycat Building studio with producer Chester Gwazda. The results of those sessions became Cloud Nothings, which arrived in January 2011. Later that year, Baldi and his band went into the studio with Steve Albini; the result of these sessions was 2012's much rawer, heavier Attack on Memory. That July, the Live @ the Grog Shop EP, which captured a particularly blistering set from Cloud Nothings' tour, was released. Following the completion of their heavy touring schedule, Baldi took some time to put the finishing touches on new material. Soon after, the band headed into a Hoboken, New Jersey studio with producer John Congleton to lay down tracks for the trio's fourth album, Here and Nowhere Else, which arrived in 2014. That year, Baldi collaborated with Wavves' Nathan Williams on No Life for Me, a split album released by Williams' Ghost Ramp label in 2015. Cloud Nothings returned with new music in 2017. Life Without Sound was a more polished-sounding set recorded in El Paso, Texas with producer John Goodmanson. ~ Heather Phares

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