Album Review Crack Cloud - Pain Olympics4 Stars
It’s a tough sport, but Crack Cloud are racing for their lives.
It’ll come as a surprise to no-one who’s followed the career of Canadian collective Crack Cloud - a group who met through an addiction recovery programme and have been making complex, confrontational post-everything explorations ever since – that ‘Pain Olympics’ is not a straightforward listen. Over eight tracks, the record goes on an odyssey-like journey, beginning with the cultish heavenly song of ‘Post Truth (Birth of a Nation)’ and ending with ‘Angel Dust (Eternal Peace)’ - an expansive, orchestral offering that feels something like acceptance. In between, the trials are explicit. A reworking of old track ‘Bastard Basket’ is antsy and claustrophobic, while the monotone, mantra-like rap of ‘The Next Fix (A Safe Space)’ is filled with loathing: “I’m not free / Never was / A good boy / A good man”. Yet while the troubles are integral, ‘Pain Olympics’ also manages to find moments of lightness and creative joy throughout. It’s a tough sport, but Crack Cloud are racing for their lives.
Having explored the depths of darkness on debut album "Pain Olympics', the Vancouver collective tell us about looking at things from a sunnier angle on its fantastic follow-up, "Tough Baby'.
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