The Black Clouds – “Photograph”

The Black Clouds - live

The Black Clouds – live

The Black Clouds is an indie rock band from Central New Jersey that formed in late 2004 and has maintained its DIY ethic all along.  Band members Dan Matthews (guitarist, vocalist), Neil Hayes (guitarist), Gary Moses (bassist), and Cory King (drummer) have self-produced, recorded, and funded their previous two albums, 2008’s Wishing Well and Better Days from 2012.  Upcoming third album, After All, is no different, but it has the added distinction of being recorded at The Foo Fighters’ Studio 606 with legendary Jack Endino (Nirvana, Mudhoney, Soundgarden) at the helm.  The band is currently on a pre-release tour and is offering a 3-track promo CD of the forthcoming album.

“Photograph” is the lead single off the promo CD and the band members rip it up like Nirvana back in the day.  The song harks back to the primal production of Nirvana’s debut album, Bleach, complete with simple, repeating, aggressive guitar riffs, relentlessly pounded drums, and even Dan’s raw vocals exclaimed in the vein of Kurt Cobain.  The drums bash, the cymbals crash, the guitar buzz in a distorted, grinding cycle, and Dan menacingly shouts out “Without you I wouldn’t want to live / Would you miss me if I died?”.  It’s all very ‘verse, chorus, verse’ until the very end of the tune where it builds up to a propulsive frisson with added guitar line agitation.  Sometimes what’s most satisfying is something simple, direct, and effective.  “Photograph” fits the bill.

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