TUESDAY, JANUARY 31, 2012|
Posted by: Joe Puglisi
Cloud Nothings latest LP starts out with "No Future/No Past," a hilarious title if you consider it a reference to the out-of-time punk rock sounds they are peddling on Attack On Memory, or their disdain for the fads of today's indie music. Tunes with this much immediacy owe everything (and nothing) to the amalgamations of years of rock sensibility. We hear it through the lens of the loud and loose four-chord bands of our youth, and the drone-y fogs of the future. Part of the success of their emotive songwriting is the rhetorical value-- our memories are being fucked with, and Cloud Nothings are removing and replacing the pieces with aggressive progressions we already know, words we've already heard, all different and all the same. Combine this with the impressive move from bedroom project to full-frontal four-piece rock band, and Cloud Nothings emerge as the most refreshingly energetic rock act in recent memory, sporting critic-fellatio and catching the ear on the first listen. A rare boast these days.
Attack on Memory is also a self-reported assault on the hazy ennui of current indie projects. Instead of succumbing to certain fads of disassociation, Dylan Baldi enlisted producer Steve Albini to give the record a bit more punch, a bit less electronic washing-machine noise nostalgia for the sake of nostalgia. But the effect winds up being one of sentimentality regardless-- just sentimentality for music that really gets the blood pumping. Have we been sleeping through the last year in music? It certainly feels that way now.
Any band that pulls off a nine-minute opus on the second track ("Wasted Days"), gets away with an all-instrumental jam session ("Separation"), and writes hooks like battle cruisers, deserves all the accolades we can afford. But like any truly memorable LP, this collection doesn't need anyone to stand up for it. Just listen.