Indie-rock outfit Cloud Nothings have released a new song, “Am I Something,” from their upcoming album, The Shadow I Remember, out February 26th, 2021 via Carpark Records.
“Am I Something” is a relentless blast of punk carried along by a rumbling double-kick drum thump and the mesmeric grind of frontman Dylan Baldi’s guitar. With his weathered growl, Baldi dives into his deepest existential thoughts, arriving at the kind of cathartic uncertainty that’s best sung with hordes of other people: “Am I something good, am I something good, am I something good?/Or just an unremarkable man?”
“Am I Something” arrives with a surreal animated music video directed by Lu Yang, whose work Baldi discovered at an exhibit at MOCA Cleveland in 2017. “I was really drawn to her approach of tying religion into gender and various gendered bodily functions,” Baldi said in a statement. “The animation style of some of her work is also exactly on my wavelength — like a psychedelic, genderless Sims game.”
Yang said her video for “Am I Something” was pulled from “a scene from my video game The Great Adventure of Material World, which depicts an artistic reality where we are exploring and roaming, in a non-binary way, post-death delusions and the intermediate state of Bardo. Bardo has a particularly special meaning in Buddhism as the connecting point and intermediate state between life and death, past and future lives, waking and sleep, and the space in-between.”
The Shadow I Remember finds Cloud Nothings reuniting with producer Steve Albini, who produced their acclaimed 2012 record, Attack on Memory. The record follows The Black Hole Understands, which arrived in July, and which Baldi and drummer Jayson Gerycz wrote and recorded while in quarantine, sending files back-and-forth between Philadelphia and Cleveland. Cloud Nothings’ last “proper” studio album was 2018’s Last Building Burning.
Along with prepping The Shadow I Remember, Cloud Nothings will mark the 10th anniversary of their debut, Turning On, with a reissue out January 29th on Carpark.