“You should get your point across with 30 minutes” Interview with Cloud Nothings.

Cloud Nothings Andrew

 

I should have been at the door of the press area a while ago, but overconfidence made ​​me think that the slender white tents of the entrance acted as “press lounge.” With my interview notebook in one hand and an ocasional beer in the other, I got to the new press area of Primavera Sound, which is located at the back of the Sony stage, just at the beginning of the now called “mordor zone” of the festival.

On the other side, talking with his bandmates, is Dylan Baldi, the leader of  Cloud Nothings (Cleveland, Ohio). He has been doing dizzying and addictive rock for 6 years and has earned the respect of audiences and critics alike. I didn´t have the press credentials with me so the interview is going to have a second drawback. Luckily there are always artists whose promo is not as heavy as another, and they´re happy to be interviewed between the wave of comings and goings of thousands of attendees who want to see the Spoon concert. Nevertheless, Cloud Nothings aren´t going to enter the big leagues in the short term, so for now their faces, but not their music, go unnoticed in Spain.
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Baldi is a sincere guy who answers bluntly and makes his point pretty clear. Prolific as ever, and leading the way for his band, he is in great form with Here And Nowhere Else ([PIAS] 2014), where the band gets great compliments wherever they go.
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Are you still living in Paris? What was the reason you moved from Cleveland to Paris? How was the change?
Yeah, I went to live in Paris because I met a french girl , so now I’m living here. (laughs)
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You’ve been playing lots of shows since the release of “Here And Nowhere Else”.How is the tour going on?

It’s going great, actually.  Every show is really fun. There hasn’t been not even one to say, “oh that really sucks” so it’s great.

It’s been just a year and a half since the release of your last album, How did you approach this new album this time?
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Well, the same way I did with the last one actually. I just sort of, sat down for a month, and make a bunch of songs that I like. I try not to think about what other people say about the records or the music. I just do stuff that I like, and that’s the way that I’m good, I think.

“I think it sounds good as a three piece. And is nice because no-one can hide behind anything else.”

On “Attack On Memory” you worked with Steve Albini whereas on this record it’s been another big name like John Congleton with the production. Why did you choose John Congleton? What’s the difference between them? 

We had a manager actually at that time that just suggested John Congleton. It was ok, working with him it was actually very similar to working with Steve. They were both very hands off, never really told us what to do, they just sort of, let us play the songs and record them really well. So it’s always a very easy process for us.

As you’re very prolific, I guess we may get a new record at some point in the next 2 years. Do you have any producer in mind for that record? 

I don’t know yet. But I wanna do one next year. For sure. I don’t know anything about it yet (laughs)

Or have you ever think about produce the album yourself?

I kind of did that it in the beginning, but it sounds silly, and I don’t know what I’m doing, so it’s way easier to have a professional guy to make it for you.

It’s said that a band really proves themselves with the live sound, is that why you put a lot of effort to sound in the record as close as you sound live?

Yeah, I like records that just sounds like a live band. I don’t like when I listen to a record, and I go to see the band and sounds totally different. I want the record to sound like the show. That’s why we do it that way. We just record live.

cloud-nothings-2014-650x400

“I haven’t seen many bands that sound like us.”

Joe Boyer is not in the band anymore, and there’s still no replacement for him. Will you go on as a three-piece band? 

For now yeah, I think it sounds good as a 3 piece. And is nice because everybody has to like, work (laughs) you know, no-one can hide behind anything else. That’s very good. It’s nice to be a 3 piece band.

Does it change something for the band or the music?

It definitely does. It makes it a little bit heavier and more powerful actually, to just have just like really intense basic things going on when every things connected, rather than fancy playing (laughs)

Cloud Nothings lyrics are very self-related, do you feel like the music is the best way for you to talk about yourself or the things that kind of happened to you?

Every record is just like a little picture of what I’m thinking, and where I’m at when I’ve made the record, so it’s very much the only way that I talk about myself actually.

But are you still writing the lyrics to the music in a last minute basis?

I am. Because is the only way I think I can get something that feels like honest and real, I guess. If I sat down and talk for a long time, it would not be good. So it’s a good way to make sure everything is as direct as I can make it.

Again 8 songs in the album. any reason in particular why 8 songs and not more nor less? Is there a perfect amount of tracks or time for an album?

I think so. 8 songs, 30 minutes. If you can’t get your point across you should maybe re-think what you’re doing.

What is it with your videoclips? You take them very seriously as you’re probably one of the bands with the best videos around.

Actually, we have a friend, Ryan Manning who is a crazy video guy, so every time we’re like, Ran, do whatever you want. And he does something amazing every time. We just trust him, and it’s pretty cool.

“Every record is just like a little picture of what I’m thinking, and where I’m at when I’ve made the record”

Have you ever seen or heard a band that you’ve liked it so much that to say “I want to sound like them” or I want to make this thing the way they’re doing it” ?

Yeah definitely, there’s a lot of bands that I just rip off, (laughs). I like a band called The Wipers, an old punk band, they are my favourites. Life Without Buildings as well, I heard their records and I was like “oh, I have to do that”.

What would you think is the secret behind the success of Cloud Nothing?

I think a big part is that we just do whatever we think sounds fun, or cool to do at the moment. Like we don’t worry about image or other people. We don’t worry about doing things that we like and enjoy and it comes across in the music

How do you find the music scene nowadays? Do you feel like lots of bands are doing a very similar music? Do you miss the guitar music in the new bands?

I haven’t seen many bands that sound like us. But I mostly see bands that listen the same records that I do. And that’s pretty cool. They use them in a different way, like the bands sounds different, but it’s fun to see a band and think “oh, I might be friends with them, cos we like the same stuff.”

Does the fact of living in Paris gave you the change to discover some european or french bands that you like? La Femme?

Kind of. I like a lot of european music, mostly jazz or even noise music. But in Paris I mostly sit down to the guitar.

What are your plans for this year?

We’re touring for the whole year, that’s it.

Last question, are you happy?

Oh yeah. I’m having so much fun.

David Bernardo

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