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A review of...
Comfort Songs by Cloud
Cloud is a project from Tyler Taormina and a dizzying array of friends from New York’s Practise Room Records collective. They've come together to make one of the most genuinely surprising records of the summer with this, their debut album Comfort Songs. And there is a great deal of comfort to be had here. It's an eclectic and joyous achievement with tribal chanting, piano, trumpet, trombone, guitars, violin and a dense production which channels predecessors like Akron/Family, The Polyphonic Spree and Neutral Milk Hotel without ever sounding like a rip-off.
Opener "Cars & It's Autumn" sounds like a classic album closer with slumbering pace and its drunken singalong verses/chorus, but that's what we're dealing with here, a collective unafraid to mess with your head. On the 2 minute mark the ramshackle din breaks down into a focussed piano riff which leads the song into its premature conclusion.
Elsewhere theres the tender "Stomach Pit" which sounds like a folk-hymn, the psychedelic groove of "Boy Sees Mirror" and the meandering "A Light Wish Weighs A Lot" which features some perfectly placed mandolin and rich brass before fading out into the record's parting gesture; a mammoth instrumental and a smokey jazz encore. A bewildering treat.