Cloakroom: Dissolution Wave [Album Review]

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Dissolution Wave
Relapse Records [2022]

Picture a world “in which an act of theoretical physics — the dissolution wave — wipes out all of humanity’s existing art and abstract thought. In order to keep the world spinning on its axis, songsmiths must fill the ether with their compositions. Meanwhile, the Spire and Ward of Song act as a filter for human imagination: Only the best material can pass through the filter and keep the world turning.” Can you dig it? Indiana’s Cloakroom sure can. Does the concept sound pretentious? Sure. Is the execution there? It is.

 Cloakroom has been with us for 10 years making, Dissolution Wave, their third album. Cloakroom shouldn’t be pigeonholed. The album burns with metal, shimmers with shoegaze, and soars with space rock. But, it’s the between the lines experimentation that really makes the album feel unique. “Lost Meaning” burns molten with heavy distortion, the title track skips lightly like a stone on a pond. The album continues to stay nimble,  “A Force At Play” had Cloakroom trying their hand at jangle-pop. The strongest track on the album, “Dottie back Thrush ” darts easily between heavy fuzz and gentle whips. The real surprise presents itself in the middle of the song, a haunting Mastodon-esque guitar spirals downward like a sullen trip to the dungeons.  “Fear of Being Fixed” is the album’s dramatic dynamo that buzzes heavy and grimy like old High On Fire.

Cloakroom’s latest, Dissolution Wave is a spaceship built musically and mentally to take you on a journey. Musically, the album never stays comfortable, it revels in its’ heavy, it flows through its ambience, and it surprises when it needs to. Mentally, the concept and the execution never get in each other’s way. The album feels crafted in obscurity, an outer space for the mind to wander through. Cloakroom hasn’t been a band that’s been on my radar but, you better believe that I’ll have their next offering in my headphone ASAP. Cloakroom hasn’t just released a thinker but, one of the year’s first groovers too!

Key Tracks: “Dissolution Wave” / “Dottie Back Thrush” / “Dissembler”

Artists With Similar Fire: Isis / Slift / Nothing

Cloakroom Bandcamp
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Relapse Records

Christopher Tahy
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