Dylan Baldi is a grown man. At 25, the Cloud Nothings singer and songwriter learned how to search for answers and ponder over life’s big questions, beyond the immediate and instinctive feelings that music making usually allows. Sticking literally to its title, ‘Life Without Sound’ explores the existence of a musician outside of his art and art-making. We are in classic indie-rock sound territory, taking directly from the ’90s, as the closing ‘Realize My Fate’ proves, with an eye blinking towards British-rock, especially in tracks like the polished opener ‘Up To The Surface’ and ‘Modern Act’.
Maybe introspection and slow work killed some of the freshness and crunchiness of the previous, more spontaneous sound that put Cloud Nothings among the most interesting guitar acts around, but Baldi’s urgency still packs a punch on ‘Things Are Right With You’. ‘Internal World’ meanwhile, with its repeated mantra “I’m not the one who’s always right” is the most likely track here to become a generational anthem, and one of the best songs to come from this band yet.