Here and Nowhere Else is the definition of garage punk rock. Cloud Nothings, known for its fuzzy, screeching guitars and loud, fast vocals continue that trend here. It is an album that sticks to the basics, one or two guitars, a bass and drums with vocals, yet is still rich and tires out the listener with its rapid pace.
The album demonstrates the band’s impressive ability to change tempo on a dime. “Psychic Trauma” begins as a slower, more structured song, but as the pre-chorus hits, the song speeds up and never slows down. Drumming changes from floor toms and bass to crashing cymbals and hard snare hits and by the end of the song, the guitar morphs into all-over-the-place, fuzzed out chaos.
Hear and Nowhere Else
This chaos, which is said with the most positive connotation, appears all over the album. On many of the songs, lead singer Dylan Baldi must yell to be heard over the screaming guitars and thrashing drums. However, the yelling fits in perfectly with the pace and sound of the music.
The style also helps to create a menacing tone that matches the somber lyrics that Baldi sprawls over most of the album. Even on the more instrumentally upbeat songs, like “I’m Not Part of Me,” Baldi still sings of introspection, loneliness and depression. And his singing style adds so much emotion to the lyrics that the listener can hear him bleeding his heart out on the record.
But, while the lyrics are deep and personal, many of the lines are repeated over and over again within tracks. “Giving Into Seeing” contains a lot of the same lines said over and over again before finally getting to the song's only chorus. This is not a singular happening, but it is also not one that takes away from the quality of the album.
Cloud Nothings uses the basics of alternative rock to create an album that never lets up.
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