Indie musician’s first album unique, witty
March 2, 2021
Young artists are taking over the indie music scene and creating a new community of singers and songwriters. This altered niche includes 21-year-old Claud, a bedroom pop musician from Chicago. Claud is the first artist to sign to Phoebe Bridgers’ record label Saddest Factory and is a member of the band Shelly, including Clairo and two others.
Claud’s debut album, Super Monster, was released Feb. 12, 2021. It includes 13 tracks, three of them with featured artists. Each song showcases Claud’s ability to turn heartbreak into a beautiful display of deep emotion. The album’s dreamy pop sounds make each track increasingly poetic and certainly qualify it as a bedroom-pop album.
Claud begins the album with the track, “Overnight,” explaining how it feels to fall in love too quickly. In a dream-like voice, Claud sings, “I fell in love like a fool overnight/ I fell but I can’t keep up with real life.” They directly capture the overwhelming feeling of being consumed with another person almost instantly, which is a true feat for a new artist.
Another relatable track about heartbreak is “Soft Spot,” which has the effect of Claud speaking to an ex-relationship in a blunt and intimate way. The line “I’ve got a soft spot for you” is sung in a sort of soft sigh, which captures the exhaustion of being unable to get someone out of the head, no matter how hard one may try.
“In or In-Between” tells a story of Claud struggling to find a way to tell someone they have feelings for them, an experience many have struggled with. They sing, “I hate this bar/ let’s go somewhere else/ Where we’re in the dark” in order to find a better place to confess some love.
Super Monster also serves to celebrate the LGBTQ community and non-binary individuals, seen in the track “That’s Mr. B**** to You,” which features Melanie Faye. The song goes, “I turn my back/ I’m stronger than you thought,” a powerful anthem for members of the LGBTQ community who may face hateful individuals trying to throw them off their path.
Claud is not only a talented and witty lyricist, but a skilled vocalist as well. The record highlight, “Guard Down” features transitions from airy falsettos to pitched down distortion. The song’s theme is about not knowing how to cope with an ex moving on. The bridge includes a pep talk in a deep pitch: “I heard that life gets easier/ Hope that s*** gets breezier.” This line could also more generally apply to the struggles of the past year, including all types of loss.
While Super Monster’s songs can each be seen as a self-contained story, the album flows well as a whole in that Claud’s poetic lyricism and dreamy voice stay consistent throughout. Claud reminds listeners that even heartbreak can bring about a beautiful and hopeful new beginning.
As a new bedroom-pop artist on the scene, Claud has certainly earned their spot among other indie artists, and it can be expected that Claud will help Saddest Factory to sign additional up-and-coming music artists.