Pain Olympics

Crack Cloud - Pain Olympics
Critic Score
Based on 12 reviews
2020 Ratings: #19 / 797
User Score
Based on 226 ratings
2020 Ratings: #295
Liked by 11 people
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Loud and Quiet

Throughout, Crack Cloud delight. Pain Olympics is an incendiary snapshot of a real musical force.

The Line of Best Fit

Raw, and real, and often emotional, Pain Olympics is a turbulent journey through the world of this community, proving in itself to be a successful outlet for those creating it, while also offering solace and alliance for those that need it.


Crack Cloud have produced an existential, genre-defying examination of the human condition. Pain Olympics is a savoury cocktail of tenacious motifs and shrewd vocals where vaudeville grins at post-punk and psych-rock flirts with hip-hop.

God Is in the TV

Members of Crack Cloud might eschew all claims of being a cult, but Pain Olympics will speak to many out there looking for meaning and something of substance to believe in.

The band are nothing if not exceptional at creating a mythos; by promoting inclusiveness and affirmation to aspirational degrees, they demonstrate that by working together, they can create beauty from chaos.
Beats Per Minute

From the Krautrock-leaning ripper “Tunnel Vision” to their dystopian Devo impersonation “Ouster Stew”, Crack Cloud explore the cracks and crevices of punk and new wave to the deepest and most feral depths.

Q Magazine

This debut's best moments ... are when they push against what a post-punk band should be.


A sonic journey that mirrors the real-life one that the collective remain on, ‘Pain Olympics’ is a disturbing, joyous, cataclysmic listen that travels from claustrophobia and fear into wide-eyed expressions of joy.

Northern Transmissions

With an anything goes manifesto, ‘Pain Olympics’ could easily go off the rails and become a train wreck, but Crack Cloud manage to get the balance between artistic freedom and well measured chaos just right.


While the troubles are integral, ‘Pain Olympics’ also manages to find moments of lightness and creative joy throughout.


This art-punk collective’s utopian first LP illuminates the joy, camaraderie, and compassion that can exist in even the most unforgiving, isolating circumstances.

Crack Cloud pass through the past and shift perspective to bring their otherworldly voodoo down to earth. If anything, they’re pioneers.
fucking what
Emphasize the "ART" in art-punk...
Existing as an art collection rather than a mere band, Crack Cloud is both a major force in terms of eccentric and big sounding music as well as a total art-punk throwback. Throwback feels at least like the right word here, as songs like Ouster Stew and Tunnel Vision feel like old-school dance punk whereas a song like Somethings Gotta Give and Favour Your Fortune are a dense and dim form of post-punk.

The collective bridge the modern gap of these previously dominant sounds through constantly ... read more
As a club fiend, now and then a rock or at least rock-leaning album comes around that appeals to my dance music sensibilities without sacrificing any of the sonics or edge of rock music. With an album that is simultaneously retro and fresh, the art-collective Crack Cloud has done just that. Their new 29 minute project ‘Pain Olympics’ is bold, brazen, yet there is something so classic at the core of the music. After several jaw dropping listens of it, I am at the point where I am ... read more
This is fucking amazing.

So just a week into listening to this, it’s almost indisputably some of the most musically sound music this year. Every song has a hook and some of the back half’s cuts are supremely danceable. Whatever it means to be an art collective instead of a band, we need more of them. LOVE THIS ALBUM.
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Track List

  1. Post Truth (Birth of a Nation)
  2. Bastard Basket
  3. Somethings Gotta Give
  4. The Next Fix
  5. Favour Your Fortune
  6. Ouster Stew
  7. Tunnel Vision
  8. Angel Dust (Eternal Peace)
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Added on: May 19, 2020