In contrast to that, “Baby Blue” opened with what sounded reminiscent of a Dinosaur Jr. guitar riff. Falco said after the show that Pavement was his favorite band, confirming my suspicions of 90s indie rock inspiration. Adding to the nostalgia, they had cassettes for sale. How cute is that? The band added that the cassettes come with a download code for the songs, since cassettes aren’t very practical, and also that they will have a proper album soon,. Side A of their self-titled cassette contains tracks “Make You Mine” and “I’m Not Yours.” Adolescent indecisiveness, much? It’s so easy to look at these guys and go, “awww,” but in all seriousness, they’ve got all the right elements to be great, and they are definitely honing their skills. Falco executes lots of attention-grabbing guitar solos, he and Levenson both do so much pedal stomping it’s almost like watching someone play Dance Dance Revolution, Kallen’s drumming is tight, and they all have a good stage presence. On the last song Levenson sang “I don’t wanna go home” before kicking his guitar on the floor of the stage to solicit feedback (and applause). I can see these guys putting on some crazy shows in the future.
We love Cloud Nothings here at BestNewBands.com. Collin recently reviewed their show in Portland, and I interviewed Dylan back in February. I was happy that I would finally get to witness their live show for myself.
Cloud Nothings wasted little time taking the stage after Indian Rebound, with Dylan Baldi placing both a bottle of water and bottle of honey next to his monitor before sound checking his guitar. Come to find out, he was loosing his voice, “so I’m going to drink honey between songs, which is weird, so don’t laugh at me while I do it,” he advised us after playing the first song, “Turning On.” He took a good squirt of it his mouth and made a face. “I hate honey so much.”
The honey seemed to be working, although Baldi’s vocals did sound more nasally than usual; especially on “Should Have,” when he sang “I always knew/I’d follow you,” it was a little more like a chipmunk version. Despite that, he still delivered the high energy show I expected. When they played “Hey Cool Kid,” one lone cool kid ran up to the front of the stage to dance. I was surprised at how subdued the rest of the crowd seemed to be, standing about 5 feet back from the stage and dancing, but not going crazy and rocking out like I thought they would. Even “Can’t Stay Awake” couldn’t get feet moving the way it should have, but I guess the rain really did put a damper on people’s moods, and not even the drummer’s California Raisons t-shirt could get more than a smirk.
They threw a new song into the mix that I haven’t heard before, and Collin was right – they totally blew through their set. It reminded me of the Ramones, when their answer for all their songs being around the minute and a half mark was because they just played so fast. Cloud Nothings play their songs super fast, and that’s they way they are supposed to be. These aren’t songs for deep reverie, just short bursts of energy. The last song of the set was “All the Time,” and the last energetic burst of the night. I sort of wished they had a more involved crowd to bounce energy off of, but this sort of thing happens all the time. At least that’s what they know.
This was a one-off for Indian Rebound with Cloud Nothings, but they will have a show at Pianos April 16th. Cloud Nothings heads to Canada today for a couple shows in Montreal and Toronto, before landing back in their hometown of Cleavland, OH.