“Last Building Burning”
BOTTOM LINE The indie rockers' latest shows rage and purpose
The struggle for great songwriters like the Cloud Nothings’ Dylan Baldi is finding the right outlet for their ideas.
Sometimes, the Cloud Nothings specialize in ferocious, frantic rock. Sometimes, they go for well-crafted indie-pop. On the Cleveland band’s new album, “Last Building Burning” (Carpark), they strike a balance, but it leans heavy on ambition and rage.
There’s no doubt of the direction thanks to the punishing opener, “On an Edge,” though the more tuneful, yet still hard-hitting “Leave Him Now” and “In Shame” will keep you singing along as well as rocking out. On the single “The Echo of the World,” the band shows how it has updated the classic grunge sound, with Baldi’s plaintive voice cutting through the layers of guitars and cascading drum rhythms.
The epic, 11-minute, hard-rocking suite “Dissolution” shows how grand Baldi’s ambitions can get, opening with a high-impact rant about “darkening your life” that flows into a wall of guitar feedback and then bashing drum solos before coming out the other side as focused as it started.
“Last Building Burning” also proves how much Cloud Nothings has grown since its breakout “Attack on Memory” without losing any of the fire.