Biscuits, Triscuits…

Cloud Nothings – Turning On
April 8, 2010, 3:42 am
Filed under: music and musings

Cloud Nothings

Turning On

Speaker Tree

There are definitely those young wonders who manage to do something amazing before they turn twenty. I know I’m not one of them, but Dylan Baldi is eighteen years old and somehow managed to create an extremely original album without sounding like a jaded eighteen-year-old. It makes me feel like I’m wasting my life. Luckily, I can feel like I’m wasting my life but also be extremely cheered up by Cloud Nothings‘ jumpy drumbeats and curiously lo-fi but dance-y instrumentals. It’s a great compromise.

With catchy guitar riffs, that move from blues-y to completely organic and jangly, and Baldi’s sensitive but “not a pussy” vocals Turning On is an innovative and stylized record that somehow gives hope that good music is still here and it’s not just old. Baldi’s vocals transform from easy and gentle to a little bit drawling at times, comparing a bit to that of Hamilton Leithauser’s of the Walkmen. The bass-lines walk on tightropes, creating puddles in the light-hearted guitar that bounce unevenly against the lyrics. The album opens with “Can’t Stay Awake,” a quick, spastic jam with blazing electric guitar solos and jumpy vocals. It flows by so crisply that it feels like only minutes have passed til one must start the whole record over, craving the blurry, guitar that winds and swells through Baldi’s washed out vocals.

“Hey cool kid” is a bleating three minute song that could go on repeat forever. The lyrics dance cyclically, sounding like a drug-induced daze as the chorus enters with a chillingly danceable guitar riff. Perfect morning music, these songs have no expiration date and feel almost timeless in their sensibility and creativity. “Water Turns back” is a more low-key tune with vocals that swim and echo as they help add to the growing melody. With completely complementary instrumentals that build and fade slenderly within each song, this album is nearly impossible to stop listening to. Do it. I dare you. While your at it, feel a little worse about not doing something awesome when you were eighteen. And then put this record back on.

-Lauren piper


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