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Cycling Through All That We Can Feel - Clothbound Album Review

Released January 29, 2021 with Take This to Heart Records The Sonder Bombs sophomore album Clothbound mixes soft alt with eclectic synth and pop punk energy which soothes you while also providing catharsis to your internal chaos. Through sudden changes in tone, mood, and genre Clothbound throws you into a world where you cannot unbuckle from a rollercoaster of feelings.

Opening with Papillon you are immediately transported into a dreamscape. You feel as though you're coming to terms with heartbreak in a technicolor world. As if the feelings became too distressing or repressed to deal with in reality, so going forward each song will make you confront what you thought you couldn’t handle.

Crying Is Cool most transparently conveys the feeling this world wants you to embrace. A timely reminder that feelings must be felt, as many of us repress and compartmentalize our current experiences to try to shield ourselves from daily crisis.

Softening the album, Scattered and The One About You appear with more pronounced harmonies and folksier guitar. Scattered gets sentimental as its lyrics vulnerably confront grief while The One About You slows it down as Scattered does, but the words and tone shift to a sense of longing. Both come together to provide a respite from the emotional turmoil.

Later on, k. takes a notably dark and twisted turn mimicking the feelings many of us get when we receive this feared text. It’s genre shifts into a heavier rock/metal sense and includes lyrics such as “I'd like to watch your heart flatline.” The song, appearing like an intrusive thought, gets to the core of feelings that many of us don’t want to admit we have.

Closing on Play It By Fear has the album ending with an upbeat outlook, but continues on the same ups and downs as the lyrics acknowledge how the good and natural things in life are not inherently making the persons experiences any better even though they feel as though they should.

Closing on a fading guitar and voices in the distance has you waking up where you started, a safe return to reality after tripping through emotions.

Buy the album here

Listen to the album here

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