At the tender age of 18 Cleveland resident Dylan Baldi began recording in his parents basement under the moniker of Cloud Nothings. Little more than a year later Baldi has toured extensively supporting the likes of indie rock heavyweights Les Savy Fav, made several releases and come January 24th will have an eponymous debut on the shelves via Wichita Recordings to whom he recently signed…the kid doesn’t hang around.
A few months after Baldi began to craft his infectious pop-punk songs he recruited a full band consisting of TJ Duke (bass), Joe Boyer (guitar), Jayson Gerycz (drums) in order to start delivering his tracks live. In December of choosing to drop out of college, a wise choice it would seem.
The first thing I noticed when I listened to this record is how far Cloud Nothings sound has come in terms of quality. Early example songs were encompassed with fuzz and came as lo-fi as basement recordings come. Baldi entrusted Chester Gwada (Dan Deacon, Future Islands) to produce the album and he melodies and hooks (and believe me Baldi has hooks to spare) to breathe whilst retaining the grittiness the songs were destined for.
Lyrically Baldi perfectly epitomizes what it is to be a teenager. There?s angst, confusion, innocence, sarcasm and much more. Album opener “Understand at all” bares witness to Baldi wondering how a relationship came to an end. He nasally repeats the chorus “I don’t understand at all” to the point where it starts to sound like a desperate plea for answers.All in all I have succumbed to the irresistible charm of this record and find myself relating with Baldi on every track, Cloud Nothings have managed to flawlessly package in essence what is it to be an awkward teen. (Alternative last line:Is it possible to sum up your late teens in under half an hour ? It most certainly is.)