cloud nothings here and nowhere else album cover

CLOUD NOTHINGSHere and Nowhere Else

01. Now Hear In
02. Quieter Today
03. Psychic Trauma
04. Just See Fear
05. Giving Into Seeing
06. No Thoughts
07. Pattern Walks
08. I’m Not Part of Me


You probably know a lot of people who should really like CLOUD NOTHINGS: They’re all over 30 now. Get fat, married or cynical. And while they’d listen to the band’s third full-length Here and Nowhere Else, they’d try to figure out how it all went down. Cry a little tear, probably remember something like a United by Fate cover graphic and sadly close the MacBook.

And indeed. CLOUD NOTHINGS present a return to form for the sort of indie-music an older brother you never had would have certainly introduced you to. This chaotic mess of stripped down noise you’d instantly associate something like FUGAZI with. Beer and sweaty pants, fighting over existence. It held doors open for bands like REFUSED or SUNNY DAY REAL ESTATE where Hip Hop didn’t seem physical or aggressive enough to let it all out, back in the days. And it passed on a vinyl-loving legacy reaching back to, let’s say, the BUZZCOCKS. But why does anyone refer to this sound-aesthetic today? Is it hip? Nostalgia or pure effect of an ideology? Is it The 90s or DIY?

And while I shovel the snow, there are probably riots going on in clubs filled with 500 people and Here and Nowhere Else all of a sudden feels like a necessity.

The record’s pace is phenomenal. CLOUD NOTHINGS rush trough dirty fuzz and infamous drum-thrill. The relatively simple structure of the songs is overridden by physical impact. Now Hear In seems to fall apart any second, only coheres by its breaks and melody. The whole record crackles from loudness. It plays with the danger of stumbling at any straight or fast-lane. But the songs are always saved by a hook or a cue. Standout Psychic Trauma starts as laid back and clean as CLOUD NOTHINGS may get, then shifts speed up until bursting into chaos and exhaustion. In comparison this record’s predecessor Attack on Memory gave more space to detail and was bright in production. Here and Nowhere Else feels a lot more claustrophobic and dense.

And though the record’s title suggests having found some kind of place or state of mind to possibly pause in, to ease and stay, it is all about movement. You might make a mistake confusing not wanting to fuck the world up with being ‘tired and lacking in imagination’ (NME). It’s more of a change in perspective, a progression. Singer Dylan Baldi describes a position resting in motion. His head moves forward or we move forward, coming to observations like: There’s something wrong here/Nothing in the air is moving. But it’s not a paradox Baldi describes. There’s no allegorical lyricism. It’s plain description of an independent, solipsistic state of mind striding through an ever changing outside world and trying to find a way of not getting lost: I’m learning how/To be here and nowhere else/How to focus on/What I can do myself. If you don’t declare it as noise: You should be thrilled.

On ‘Here and Nowhere Else’ Cleveland-bred CLOUD NOTHINGS serve thirty minutes of physically gripping indie-rock. It’s music for people using skateboards not iPads.

NBHAP Rating: 4/5