Max Clarke, better known by his stage persona Cut Worms, has been making a name for himself in and beyond the Brooklyn scene since the release of his debut album Hollow Ground in 2018. Released July 2nd, 2020, “Unnatural Disaster” and “Baby Come On” are Cut Worms’ latest singles packed with a genre blending kick that ends his absence since the release of Aquarium Drunkard’s Lagniappe Session in May of 2018.
“Unnatural Disaster” opens up with a hearty display of guitar that sits somewhere between the stylings of Gram Parsons and James Taylor, setting the track in a direction that boils down the roots of the Cosmic American sound. Brooklyn based singer-songwriter Max Clarke displays the marriage of these cowboy and pop aesthetics through his scratchy yet smooth vocals which his balladeering voice lends itself so freely to. In moments of this track, I catch Clarke playing with a scouse sort of tone that almost sounds George Harrison-y to me, which is not something you regularly find in an Ohio native. This amalgamation of influence brings even more complex layers to the genre blend he’s working with, setting the track in a category of its own. As we near the four minute mark, the track closes off just as it started leaving us to sit with the magical melting pot that is “Unnatural Disaster”
There is a substantial sonic switch from the first single to the second as “Baby Come On” displays a more pop driven side of Cut Worms’ personality. Opening up with inviting keys, this track immediately sits in a lighter pocket than the first. With lyrics vague enough to apply to every listener such as “Hold me close, say you will always be mine, you’re the only one I ever wanted to find,” this song is easy to fall in love with as you let it speak to your inner romantic. Contrasting the shadow of slight melancholy that floats above “Unnatural Disaster,” “Baby Come On” offers up something upbeat that’s reminiscent of The Beach Boys and Emmit Rhodes. The idea of two singles on such different ends of the musical spectrum being released at once couldn’t have suited Cut Worms better and both tracks hold their own and commit to their style successfully.
Listen to “Unnatural Disaster” and “Baby Come On” here: