Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Some Loud Thunder

When I heard that Clap Your Hands Say Yeah had a second album on the horizon, I didn’t get too excited. I wouldn’t go so far as to say I wanted them to fail, just that I expected them to. Their debut album, however brilliant, was very much a novelty. The sound was so obscure that repeating it would just sound stale. And they had struck such a delicate balance of perfection that it seemed any deviation would result in disaster. Well having now heard the album, I’m proud to admit that I was wrong. It may not live up to their debut, but Some Loud Thunder is great. I really should be ashamed of myself for having so little faith. After all, they were my #1 band to name-drop when demonstrating my ridiculous music tastes and they always went down well when I wanted to release some energy. Some Loud Thunder does differ from their debut, feeling a lot slower, less intense and lacking the tightly packaged pop pieces, however this doesn’t detract from the listening experience, as the band has returned with a richer, more emotional sound which works equally well. While I enjoy the album now, it wasn’t always this way. In what seems to be a common experience, I actually hated it at first. This album is definitely a grower and one you’ll have to stick by for a while before you’ll appreciate it.

Satan Said Dance – This song really stands out as one of the album’s more obscure songs. It’s the perfect evolution of CYHSY’s quirky sound

Mama, Won't You Keep Those Castles In The Air & Burning – I was caught between this and Love Song No. 7 as the best song to use as an example of their slower sound; evidently this won. That little tweak he does when singing ‘morning paper’ always gets me.

For a perfect example of why I hated the album at first, look no further than the title track (try Hype Machine). For the first few listens, I couldn’t even bear to listen through to the end, I had to skip. In fact it sounds so bad that I thought my copy of the album was broken. The problem is that it features very heavy distortion, to the point where the song underneath is barely distinguishable. It wasn’t until I heard the original that I was able to appreciate the energy that this distortion brought. It’s still a bit dodgy though. See how this version makes you feel.


Wayne said...

Some Loud Thunder definitely continues to grow on me. I liked it upon first listen, but it has become even better after a couple of weeks of listening. And "Mama..." is definitely my favourite track.
Btw, on your previous post I just can't get into Of Montreal. Their record seems to be getting universal love, but their sound just leaves me cold. I've tried to figure out why because they seem like a band I should like but I just can't.

Peter said...

Hmm that's worrying to hear about Of Montreal, they're just about one of the funnest bands going around at the moment.

I would definitely recommend 'Satanic Panic in the Attic' over the latest, not because it isn't good but because SPITA is just so incredible.

I actually didn't like them at first either so maybe if i explain my story it may help. When I listened to the album I fell in love with 'Disconnect the Dots' almost instantly but found the rest rather annoying. Thankfully however I gave it a second chance and discovered an affinity for 'Eros' Entropic Tundra'. Now liking more than one song I was willing to give the album a few more spins and slowly but surely I came to realise that the whole thing was brilliant. These days I would probably cite 'Lysergic Bliss' as my favourite, largely due to ridiculous vocal work. But yeah I strongly encourage you stick with them. In fact all this talking has left me craving, I'm off to experience some lysergic bliss right now. Good luck!

Nick Fulton said...

That's interesting, because I thought my copy of the album was bung as well. That first song's really layered heavily in distortion. Personally I think Some Loud Thunder is really patchy, only about three or four songs have managed to catch my imagination. On another note I got the new Wolf and Cub Yesterday, I've listened once and it sounds pretty good.