NOTHING takes shoegaze and shakes it up a bit.
NOTHING has a past. A deep, dark past filled with violence, incarceration and, more relevantly, metal, hardcore and shoegaze. Instead of churning out songs about turning things around or seeing the light after the dark, NOTHING revels in the darkness. From a musical standpoint, their nasty, gritty and disgusted point of view is in direct contrast with their dreamy, beautiful and fuzzy shoegaze. While a gnarly worldview can be oppressive, NOTHING combines a musical beauty with the boiling shit humans leave in their wake on Tired of Tomorrow to create something pretty special. We probably should have been able to see this coming considering their last record was called Guilty of Everything, but, hey, we all make mistakes—and Tired of Tomorrow takes life’s great mistakes and shoves them in your face with enormous beauty slathered in nihilism.
“Fever Queen” starts things off with an explosion of sorts—or a series of them for that matter. A single chord pounded on with the bass drum and cymbals crashing through the speakers, all of it managing to feel as if things are going on a bit too long until the next chord gets its own beating. Slow, calculated and fuzzed up, the song settles into a vocal trance that makes this tune a tremendous way to open a record. “The Dead Are Dumb” follows “Fever Queen” by dipping into dreamland, the opening riff creating the feeling of a nice, sweet stroll through a brutal desert whipping sand in your eyes. Picture any scene from any movie in which a character had to cross a desert. Got it? Good. Now, turn “The Dead Are Dumb” to 11. It may not be The Dark Side of the Moon and The Wizard of Oz, but you’ll get the picture.
“Vertigo Flowers” could double as an alt-rock track. It’s upbeat, it’s fun, it gets damn ballsy in the bridge with a slight downbeat breakdown. It’s a tremendous tune with Domenic Palermo’s light, dreamscapable voice that could easily find its way to radio. Now, when it comes to the lyrics, the following set may be some of the tamest on the record, but comparing this darkness with the lighthearted nature of the music on this track will display the fantastic contrast mentioned earlier. Palermo sings, “And I hate/ Everything you’re saying/ Anxiety/ It’s all about me/ Watch out for those/ Who dare to say/ That everything/ Will be ok/ Watch out for those/ Who want to be/ Anything at all.” Uh, see? NOTHING doesn’t pull punches when it comes to their inherent grimness even when they are, in fact, pulling punches when this tune is juxtaposed to the more visceral and disturbing lyrics on Tired of Tomorrow.
“Nineteen Ninety Heaven” is one of the softer tracks on Tired of Tomorrow. It’s a pretty tune wrapped up tight in depression – a song to get lost in. “Curse of the Sun” and “Eaten by Worms” offer some huge noise to the proceedings. Now, if you’re really looking for a treat, once you get to the title track at the tail end of the record you’ll find one—a piano-driven manic depressor that is as sad as it is gorgeous. It may seem like an out-of-left-field choice, but it fits so perfectly within Tired of Tomorrow’s context that it will leave you wishing NOTHING tried this sort of thing more often.
This is a special record. NOTHING takes shoegaze and shakes it up a bit. They strike a balance between musical beauty and existential brutality that would seem silly on any other album. It’s accessible, heavy, dreamy music, but it will invade your sense of positivity or happiness like a virus and hang a big, dark cloud over your head. There’s nothing wrong with that, but Tired of Tomorrow just won’t be for everyone. It can’t be. And, again, this is a record called Tired of Tomorrow by a band called NOTHING. They are the product of violence, sadness and shame. And, as a result, they belong in the darkness so they can light up a room with their massive, gorgeous music.