Now the Edmonton, Alberta native is back with Cry Baby, an album that finally opens up what Nolan has kept locked tightly for the past three years. The 10-song collection is a trip through melancholic madness, touching on darkness and depression, broken relationships and endless booze-fuelled evenings. Yet, at its core is Nolan’s unwavering strength as a lyricist, and his wounded-heart delivery that reminds us of our humanity. Cry Baby is, in essence, Nolan unapologetically sharing his story, and through that finding a second chance and a new beginning.
Therein lies the irony of Nolan choosing to call this album Cry Baby. Few other songwriters outside of, say, Ryan Adams and Mark Kozelek consistently demonstrate a willingness to venture as deeply into the dark corners of their psyches. With Cry Baby, Joe Nolan is now ready to live again after gazing into the void.