Cloakroom
Dissolution Wave


4.0
excellent

Review

by Sunnyvale STAFF
January 28th, 2022 | 161 replies


Release Date: 01/28/2022 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Short and sweet

Cloakroom’s own description of their music as “stoner emo” has stuck to the band like glue. It’s sort of an evocative turn of phrase, all the more so because most bands’ proclamations of a similar ilk end up being pretty disappointing. Far more often than not, when a group declares themselves to be the incarnation of a previously unknown merger of styles, it turns out that the music in question is actually pretty generic, or at least far from unique, and the whole thing rankles a bit. With Cloakroom, this common gripe is irrelevant, because the collective genuinely does have their own style, built from a fairly impressive array of influences.

If one had to pigeonhole Cloakroom’s music, most would simply describe them as shoegaze, given the group’s notable similarities to contemporary groups on the heavier side of the genre, like Nothing and Narrow Head. That’s not really fair at all though, as the group’s riffage has a certain something to it which recalls heavy psych/stonerism and additionally makes “space rock” a plausible term for what’s going on. As well, the always strong, if sometimes unintelligible, lyrics add a dimension of indie and emo, and the group’s sonic explorations have often wandered lazily into slowcore and folk territories. Suffice to say that Cloakroom are an interesting band and don’t quite fit into anyone’s preconceived notions.

2017’s Time Well is one of those albums which tend to stick with the listener. Its ponderous collection of spacey shoegaze-meets-slowcore anthems scratched a very particular itch, even if I’d argue that it had some weaker moments and may have stretched on a bit excessively. By the look of it, the band themselves may have felt similarly, with the album’s long-awaited follow-up Dissolution Wave clocking in over twenty minutes shorter than its predecessor. The average song here is notably more concise, and broadly it feels like Cloakroom aim for a taut and focused experience, while doing what they do best. As such, expect a preponderance of heavy shoegaze/space rock (literally, as the new set of tunes function as a pseudo-concept album about an “asteroid miner who writes songs by night”). This isn’t to say that the group has abandoned experimentation, as there are some interesting song structures in tunes like “Dottie-Back Thrush” and the closer “Dissembler”, with its jarring sudden stop near the end, not to mention “Doubts”, which provides an intriguing vision of Americana through a shoegaze prism.

It’s very early yet, and the jury remains out on how Dissolution Wave will hold up in comparison to the rest of Cloakroom’s solid discography. What can be said is that, three LPs and two EPs in, the Midwestern outfit maintains a very reliable standard of quality. Even while trimming back the expansiveness of their last offering, they’re still aiming for the stars (see what I did there). Go ahead, ask your friendly neighborhood theoretical physicist what a Dissolution Wave is and you’ll get the simple answer, in layman’s terms: it’s a set of eight great songs, heavy enough to get your head nodding and with enough feeling to tug at the heart as well.



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user ratings (124)
3.7
great


Comments:Add a Comment 
Sunnyvale
Staff Reviewer
January 28th 2022


3822 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Let the discussion commence!

loveisamixtape
January 28th 2022


11609 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

nice



agreed w/ paragraph 2

JayEnder
January 28th 2022


14102 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This album is like The Great Dismal's sludgier, more uplifting younger brother. Rules so hard.



Nice review man :]

Digging: Static Dress - Rouge Carpet Disaster

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
January 28th 2022


13397 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Made me want to jam The Great Dismal again tbh but this has a decent vibe I think



Nicely written review

Pikazilla
January 28th 2022


22992 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great Dismal wishes it was anywhere near as good as this

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
January 28th 2022


13397 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I'm afraid it already is much better : (

Sunnyvale
Staff Reviewer
January 28th 2022


3822 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks guys!



I do need to jam The Great Dismal again, my gut tells me this is better but it's been too long to since I heard that album to say for sure

JayEnder
January 28th 2022


14102 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

They're both masterpieces. Dom and Doyle are geniuses.

Scoot
January 28th 2022


21190 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

great dismal is better



this is excellent though

Digging: Static Dress - Rouge Carpet Disaster

loveisamixtape
January 28th 2022


11609 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

they are barely comparable to me. sonically similar at times but that is about it. the song structures here are far more dense and the whole thing overall is undoubtedly less power chord-y. i hear way different visions for both



both albums are good

JayEnder
January 28th 2022


14102 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I think its because the same guys worked on both albums. Just got that vibe. Did Will Yip produce this?

loveisamixtape
January 28th 2022


11609 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

nah zac montez did this one. same person that did time well and (i think) infinity

JayEnder
January 28th 2022


14102 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ah cool thanks for the info! Gotta rejam Time Well now and see how it holds up to this.

Purpl3Spartan
January 28th 2022


3543 Comments


Need to recheck this cause I was stressed yesterday and barely paid attention to it outside of a few special moments

Digging:

Relinquished
January 28th 2022


47652 Comments


more like Doyle left his mark on Nothing and not the other way around. I get the comparison but it’s shallow at that.

JayEnder
January 28th 2022


14102 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Well enough comparisons then, lets talk about how good Dissembler is

loveisamixtape
January 28th 2022


11609 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

the final minute-ish of dissembler sounds like peacefully and slowly dying after being bitten by a poisonous snake

theBoneyKing
January 28th 2022


22222 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Dug this on first go, looking forward to digging deeper into it.

Digging: Ethel Cain - Preacher's Daughter

JesperL
Staff Reviewer
January 28th 2022


4446 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

hell fuckin yes sunny, p much fully agreed w your great rev!

i caught these guys live a few years ago with caspian and it was an insane(ly good) show

Digging: Dream Dolphin - Dolphins Talk to You

WatchItExplode
January 28th 2022


9649 Comments


Dug the heavy atmosphere

Digging: Straw Man Army - SOS



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