Cloud Nothings
Here and Nowhere Else


4.0
excellent

Review

by Dan H. CONTRIBUTOR (50 Reviews)
April 2nd, 2014 | 64 replies | 25,855 views


Release Date: 04/01/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: You're a part of me

As if in direct response to the inoffensive, pretty indie rock which dominates airtime and passes as rock music on nights out, artists like Japandroids, Ty Segall and Titus Andronicus have purposefully been dressing up their albums in gritty, sweaty outfits. They are still capable of delivering big, memorable choruses if they wish, but they do so without the squeaky clean production or the forgettable verses which their easily digestible peers rely on. Ohio’s Cloud Nothings follow this increasingly familiar blueprint, and their sound hinges on typically lo-fi production, heavily distorted guitars, and screeching centrepiece Dylan Baldi.

Here and Nowhere Else sees Cloud Nothings abandon the occasional self loathing which was evident on predecessor Attack on Memory. There’s nothing nearly as dispirited and defeatist as “No Future/No Past” here, and there’s a real sense that Baldi has gone from inwardly reflecting his anger to cathartically yelling about his problems - and Here and Nowhere Else is all the better for it. The nasal edge which accompanied Baldi’s voice on Attack on Memory has dissipated, and it has been replaced by hoarse screams which compliment the heated, purgative approach he takes.

If deep, meaningful lyrics are what scratches your musical itch, then you’re likely to be disappointed by those shouted by Dylan Baldi, as by his own admission he simply doesn't care about them. As a result the meanings behind the songs rarely delve below what’s obvious on face value, which for the most part, concerns whatever Baldi happens to be pissed about that day. Despite the fact that they’re largely uninspired the ferocity with which they’re delivered is infectious, and after a few listens you might even find yourself reciprocating, because hey, you get pissed at stuff and things sometimes too – just wait until you catch yourself shouting the end of “Giving Into Seeing” back at him. The lo-fi romp which surrounds the lyrics doesn’t judge them for their lack of depth, and most of the time they’re obscured between a crushing riff and an indecipherable yell anyway.

And the riffs here are huge, and the yells are plentiful, and they’re a large part of what makes Here and Nowhere Else so brilliant. The album bounds from track to track with unwavering ferocity, and though the first 40 seconds of “Psychic Trauma” do lure you into believing otherwise, feral screams at the song’s end quickly restore normality. The memorable riffs are so commonplace that examples can be plucked from virtually any moment from any of the eight tracks, and the frantic intro of “No Thoughts” and opening chords of “Now Hear In” are as energetic as they are typical.

The most obvious criticism that can be levelled at Here and Nowhere Else is its short running time. Although Dylan Baldi claims that “You gotta stop at eight, because the ninth track just sounds the same,” it perhaps hints at a lack of ambition or an inability to deviate from their relatively limited formula, and without extended jam “Pattern Walks” the album could be comfortably absorbed in half an hour. This does however mean that your favourite cuts are never too far away, and coupled with Baldi’s highly charged delivery and the frenetic instrumentation, Here and Nowhere Else succeeds in being their most satisfying listen to date.



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user ratings (260)
Chart.
3.7
great
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • andr13 (4)
    Here and Nowhere Else is stark and simple, but often stunning, rewarding those who are wil...

    ronburgandy (4)
    The best kind of angst...

    BoiledHippos (2)
    Like a stale gust of wind....

    Justin Swope (2.5)
    Cloud Nothings’ highly anticipated fourth album is yet another stark, impassioned effort...

  • James Versluis (4)
    I'm not telling you all I'm going through....

    snydely (4.5)
    Messy, frantic, and jarring, with enough catchy hooks to attract a wide audience...


Comments:Add a Comment 
AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
April 2nd 2014



7328 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I really don't know what people are seeing in this. Pales in comparison to Attack on Memory for me.

PuddlesPuddles
April 2nd 2014



4772 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Pales in comparison to (end of sentence)

VheissuCrisis
Contributing Reviewer
April 2nd 2014



908 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

What is it you don't like about this Ali?

Digging: Interpol - El Pintor

Athom
Staff Reviewer
April 2nd 2014



17204 Comments

Album Rating: 4.2

I like this a lot more than anything Cloud Nothings have ever done before

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
April 2nd 2014



7328 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

It's hard to put a finger on it, I almost feel like I'm hearing a different record to everyone else. To me it just sounds like a bit of a mess; no focus, no hooks and little of the added ambition that I really enjoyed on AoM.

ti0n
April 2nd 2014



1385 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

"It's hard to put a finger on it, I almost feel like I'm hearing a different record to everyone else. To me it just sounds like a bit of a mess; no focus, no hooks and little of the added ambition that I really enjoyed on AoM."

well i partially agree on this. i dont like this even half as much as AoM but its still an enjoyable experience

Digging: Royal Blood - Royal Blood

Athom
Staff Reviewer
April 2nd 2014



17204 Comments

Album Rating: 4.2

really? i think the hooks are huge.

thelastsignal
April 2nd 2014



1350 Comments


Great review, Dan. This sounds pretty awesome, excited to check this out.

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
April 2nd 2014



7328 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

"really? i think the hooks are huge."

Like I said, I feel like I'm listening to a different record. I've listened to it three or four times now and none of it has moved me whatsoever.


scottpilgrim10
April 2nd 2014



3023 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Awesome! This really needed a review. I would pos if I could. Great, great, great album

Digging: Kanye West - My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

FreddieDelaney31
April 2nd 2014



56 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

This album is just jammed with hooks in every song.

Digging: Cymbals Eat Guitars - LOSE

robin
Emeritus
April 2nd 2014



4248 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

no focus, no hooks and little of the added ambition that I really enjoyed on AoM.


exactlyyy!

WhiteNoise
April 2nd 2014



3108 Comments


Doesn't come close to AoM (which was pretty much a classic) but these guys are such a strong up and coming band...Their secret weapon is their drummer, they have to hold on to him.

Breaded
April 2nd 2014



45 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This album is much, much more cohesive than AoM in my opinion.

It doesn't have as many stand out tracks but I think song for song it's a better, more put together
album.

Lucid
Contributing Reviewer
April 2nd 2014



7023 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

this record is like Joyce Manor covering Leaves Will Turn Inside You. I'm obsessed

Digging: FKA twigs - LP1

ProjectFreak
April 2nd 2014



1320 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Vocals ruined Attack on Memory for me

ShrillYell
April 3rd 2014



190 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I actually like this more than AoM. More consistent...doesn't have Fall In. Pretty much a winner.

amanwithahammer
April 3rd 2014



406 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah AoM was fantastic but this is even better. So so good

amanwithahammer
April 3rd 2014



406 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Wasted Days is still their best SONG though

Lucid
Contributing Reviewer
April 3rd 2014



7023 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

the drumming seriously makes the record



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