(Photo Credit: Kristen Jan Wong)
Advance Review - Claud: Super Monster (February 12, 2021)
Claud's debut full-length Super Monster is a collection of alt pop goodness that has melodies that are perfect for the good and bad times. Super Monster is named after an unreleased Daniel Johnstone painting ironically titled 'Claud & the Supermonster'. What's even better is that the cover art is a painting by Claud that was inspired by the Johnstone work. The album also represents the first release on Phoebe Bridgers' Saddest Factory Records (an imprint of Dead Oceans). For Saddest Factory Records' first release, they chose a bold artist in Claud.
Claud launches into snappy progressions and melodies that make the listener want to move. Their vocals pair perfectly with the atmosphere they create. Claud is also a prodigious songwriter, having written approximately fifty tracks that were contenders for Super Monster before limiting the release down to thirteen.
Claud is perfect at adapting their sound. They can slow things down as they do in the fantastically arranged "Ana". However, they are able to lift things up when they want with tracks like "That's Mr. Bitch to You". Lyrically, Claud effortlessly writes almost poetically about the highs and lows of relationships and the difficulties associated with being a queer artist.
Claud has had a long road to travel, starting out at Syracuse University in New York, before leaving and splitting time visiting with their mother in California and their father in Chicago. Despite this they landed in New York at the world famous Electric Lady Studios to record Super Monster. The final product is a monumental achievement for Claud and a strong debut for Saddest Factory Records.
Rating - 4.5/5