Interviewing Cloud Nothings

Mike Sheffield

dylan baldi cloud nothings

Dylan Baldi and his band. Via.

Cleveland, Ohio’s Cloud Nothings stirred up the “lofi” community with an onslaught of 7-inch releases of technical, high-energy, glimmering nerd-pop. Which is all the more impressive considering the band’s mastermind, Dylan Baldi, is a mere 18 years of age.

While the quartet were packed in their mom’s “basic tan minivan” on their way to Washington D.C. on a slew of east coast dates supporting indie demigods Wavves, I was able to shoot the shit with Dylan, where among other things, he seemed amused when I called his band “Television 182.”

So most blogs bring up your age and that you left college after a semester, and so will I. You left college after a semester?

I wasn’t really feeling it. It was fine, I mean I got good grades and stuff but I wanted to do music. Basically, I was bored and wanted to do other things all the time.

What kind of high school did you go to?

A normal one. In the suburbs.

You do anything in high school? Play any sports?

Haha. No sports. I played tuba in the marching band, and guitar in the jazz band.

So you are on tour with Wavves right now. Feel any meltdowns coming on?

Ha. I don’t know. Not really. I’m never really in a bad mood. But who knows… maybe we’ll get there…

If Cloud Nothings could be summed up in an afternoon, what kind of day would it be?

I’m not really sure what that means but I’ll try: It’d be sunny, and I’d be giving money away, and it would be a big party. It would be simple and secretly complex, like there are other forces at work.

What’s the sweatiest show you’ve ever played?

This one we just played in New Brunswick [NJ]. It was in this small stuffy basement called Fuck Mountain. It had been 95 degrees all day, and I was just soaked. We played with Slow Animal.

So, the question on everyone’s mind: Are you a Drew Carey fan?

Haha. I mean, I don’t know. I don’t think so. In the show they always ate from this pizza place, Antonio’s Pizza, and it always looked so good on TV. So, of course, me and my friends ordered from the spot and well, it wasn’t good. So yeah, no.

Maybe I’m projecting, but I hear a lot of pop/punk in what you guys do. More so, in what all these “lofi” bands are doing. You have the Richard Hell snarl but those pop/punk guitar leads. Like “Television 182.” Did you listen to any pop/punk growing up?

Haha. No, not really. I mean I listened to a lot of Green Day like everyone did. But then it was classic rock until high school.

What are you guys listening to in the van today? Give me the embarrassing stuff.

Funny enough, Television. But also [At The Drive-In’s] Relationship of Command.

Any Steely Dan?

Yeah dude. Totally. I’m really in love with the guy who plays sax on the newer stuff, what’s his name, Chris Potter?

Yeah dude, Potter’s an ace. Have you heard his group Fly?

No.

Oh man, they shred. Anyways, if you could share the stage – or a virgin piña colada – with anyone right now, who’d it be?

Ha. I don’t know, maybe Ke$ha. (Dylan ponders the question for a minute) Definitely Ke$ha. I’m very interested by her. I mean, her mom helps her write songs. I want to get to the bottom of that.

Pick up the latest Cloud Nothings release, the Didn’t You 7-inch, out now on Old Flame Records.

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