Search The Line of Best Fit
Search The Line of Best Fit

"Cloud Nothings"

Cloud Nothings – Cloud Nothings
25 January 2011, 11:00 Written by Tom Walters

Dylan Baldi is a hard worker. Over the past year, he’s churned out various tapes, split 7”s and EPs full of joyous, vigorous garage rock that’s seen plenty of attention from all corners of the blogosphere and has managed to keep afloat amongst the sea of lo-fi artists swimming around out there. He even records all the instruments himself, too.

However: lo-fi acts are cleaning up. No longer are we seeing a surge of bedroom-boppers fuelling their teen angst and sugar-coated energy in to a 4-track with as much reverb and noise as possible. While their production values are receiving more attention; the core energy tends to stays the same, as is the case with Baldi’s debut LP on Wichita.

Cloud Nothings is an incredibly fun record. Recorded in a warehouse in Baltimore in August, the summer sun undoubtedly has its influence in the hummable hooks and irresistible melodies. Right from the opening track ‘Understand It All’, you’re instantly aware of the crispness this record promises – and it stays true to its word.

I’ve always felt that Dylan seems a little unsure about his sound on previous records, often taking slightly different directions from release to release. Single ‘Hey Cool Kid’ saw a mellower, more lethargic approach to the garage rock genre and latest EP Leave You Forever was full of more lively, Wavves-esque jams. Cloud Nothings sees the best of both worlds – refined, and more.

From the moment you press play, the LP takes you on a spellbinding journey through a series of different genres, moods and paces. Dylan seems infatuated with pop punk and post-hardcore, which mix incredibly well with the jangly, more down-tempo garage rock moments. With ‘Not Important’, the thrill of the fast-paced, anthemic punk rock rollercoaster of a chorus is fantastic. The same goes for ‘Rock’, 1 minute and 42 seconds of nostalgic hooks, wails and flails about heartbreak and hand-holding. But it’s not all about the energy – ‘Forget You All The Time’ provides a well-welcomed, hazy break from all the antics and provides the best insight in to Dylan’s slightly more emotional side (what’s more, the album is laden with girls and relationships).

‘Nothing’s Wrong’ on the other hand provides one hell of a hook to bring things back up and shows Dylan isn’t one to just sit down in the dumps about things – instead channelling these thoughts and emotions in to something incredibly uplifting and light-hearted. ‘You’re Just Not That Good At Anything’ is a great example of this, providing that fuck-you to girls that pop-punk pioneers such as New Found Glory and blink-182 previously mastered.

Overall, the record is full to the brim with charm and charisma and that should be evident right from the get-go via the vibrant and psychedelic cover art. If you’re looking for a nostalgic, exhilarating soundtrack this summer – Cloud Nothings’ undeniable catchiness is where it’s at.


Share article

Get the Best Fit take on the week in music direct to your inbox every Friday

Read next