A conversation with Cloud Nothings's Dylan Baldi
Earlier this year, I had the pleasure of witnessing Cloud Nothings headline El Club in support of their most recent album, Life Without Sound. Over the course of their career, Cloud Nothings has continued to grow and flourish by existing in the gray area between indie rock and punk, never quite committing to one genre over the other. What results is a group of musicians with a knack for energetic shows and a tight, clean sound.
The band played The Majestic Theater in Detroit opening for Canada’s own indie rock gems Japandroids, a match made in heaven between two of modern rock’s catchiest groups.
In a phone conversation with frontman Dylan Baldi, we talked about the band’s recent experiences on tour opening for Japandroids, the growth of Cloud Nothings since its inception and future plans for the band.
The Michigan Daily: Could you reflect on your experiences touring with Japandroids thus far?
Dylan Baldi: Sure. We were in Canada for most of (the first week), through a lot of Canada I’ve never been to. So it’s been kind of fun going through there. Touring through parts of the country that I’ve never even thought about going to. Just seeing what’s it’s like for a Canadian band to do that all the time, and thinking about how it can be really kind of taxing to make really long drives through what feels like the middle of nowhere, and just tour Canada all the time. It was interesting to get that perspective of touring through a different country. And the tour’s been fun.
TMD: Do you see a lot of overlap with your fans and Japandroids’ fans or do you think you’ve been reaching a new fanbase on this tour?
Baldi: I think a lot of the people who come to the shows are there specifically to see Japandroids. We get some people who are there to see us for sure, but it does feel like they’re Japandroids’ shows, which is cool. I think a lot of their fans may not know who we are, so it’s kind of fun to play for people who don’t know who you are every night. It makes the shows interesting, where you can never really tell what people are thinking.
TMD: How do you feel the crowds have been reacting to your sets compared to your last headlining tour?
Baldi: Pretty good. There’s like a little pocket of people. Usually you can tell when people know the songs, so those people have been going crazy. Everyone seems into it, you know. Nobody seems bored or anything. And we’re selling all sorts of t-shirts so somebody likes it.
TMD: Now that Life Without Sound is a few months away from being a year old, could you tell me how you think Cloud Nothings has grown since you first started?
Baldi: We’ve just become more and more — I just did another interview actually where I kind of said something similar — but it’s almost like a telepathic unit at this point. Where like we’ll have little parts in the songs that we’ll change every night or something, but none of us will talk about it or say like “We should do this differently!” It’ll just sort of happen on its own. We’ll be like "Oh, interesting, how did we do that without talking about it?" That’s something we probably couldn’t have done seven years ago whenever the band first started. Just little moments like that have definitely grown throughout time and been more fun to kind of naturally see what happens. We’re just a better band than we were when we started.
TMD: I know tour is a busy time, but do you have plans for a new Cloud Nothings record in the near future?
Baldi: I want to get something next year. That would be the goal for me, because we put this record out, we toured it, and now we’re done. It seems like it’s already time to get something new out there and try to have a reason to go back on tour rather than just play the same old songs again.