The word nostalgia comes from two words: nóstos, meaning “homecoming”, and álgos, meaning “ache.” I’ve always thought the best music invokes a little of the feeling. New music is wonderful, there’s a high I get from finding an artist with a sound I’ve never heard before, but even new and unique music should invoke a playfully painful memory.
Cautious Clay‘s video for “SIDEWINDER” brought me back to a night in high school. I’m not even sure when it was, but a friend with photography chops did a shoot of us playing with light. We gathered in his overgrown, almost forested yard, safe from the outside world, and got to work. The long, overexposed shots capturing the light’s trail as we danced and drew whatever came to mind. It got so dark we could only see each other by the lights of our phones, glow sticks, and candles. We were a group of best friends that had been together for years, but soon would split in two and never speak again. Almost 10 years later, the split is okay. But, man, does the memory feel like home, and make me ache.
To only give Cautious Clay props for reminding me of that moment would be a tragedy. He is stupid talented. To be as direct as possible, I’ve been waiting for a new Frank Ocean album for years, and now that I heard Clay, I don’t need it anymore. His beats are complex and meld perfectly with his tracks. His voice is perfect. His lyrics are simultaneously sweet, sad, and sexy. It’s undeniably some love-making music.
Luckily for me, he’s based out of NYC. I need to take my partner to a show and let the music do its work. Hope to see you soon, Cautious Clay.