Cloudeater: Sun and Sidearm  

Diem

Cloudeater stands at a crossroads where trip-hop and post-industrial rock converge with blue-eyed soul. As unnatural (and uninteresting) as that may seem on paper, the Atlanta five-piece has fostered a unexpectedly compelling sound with its second full-length, Sun and Sidearm. There's even a potential hit brewing here with "Hardly Wait" as narcotic, techno-driven bass throbs and monster melodies grumble and swoon. It's a sound that isn't easily characterized, but there's a definite edge to the album's concise, three-minute-plus numbers that place Cloudeater in a narrow margin of post-'90s electronic rock acts that have a grasp on its aesthetic and are able to give it an edge. That aesthetic isn't fully realized yet, but songs such as "Blurry Wisdom," "The Dive" and "Nothing Critical" hit pretty close to the mark and underscore the kind of depth and musical ideals that define Cloudeater's sound and vision, and it's entrancing to watch it all take shape. (4 out of 5 stars)

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