Cloud Nothings – Here and Nowhere Else
“I’m moving forward while I keep the past around me,” rasps 23-year-old Dylan Baldi on Pattern Walks, the seven-minute earth-scorcher from his Cleveland trio’s fourth album. The lyric is typical self-interrogation from Baldi, a pop-punk songwriter of remarkable nuance who has, over five years, endeared a cross-genre fanbase by nestling hardcore angst beneath melodies so perfect they’re almost edible.
His lyrics, he says, don’t bear analysis, which you suspect is true: despite I’m Not Part of Me’s undeniable charm as a post-breakup anthem, Baldi’s targets elsewhere, villainous but vague, seem to facilitate rage rather than genuinely inciting it; at best, his words evoke the political and existential disaffection of golden-era predecessors like the Wipers. And yet while unoriginal, Baldi’s music is never overshadowed by influences. Instead he wears them comfortably, like patches on his rucksack, moving forward with the past around him. [Jazz Monroe]