The Last Dinosaur is the musical project of Jamie Cameron, whose last album under this moniker was 2010’s fantastic Hooray! For Happiness. This new album, The Nothing, has been eight years in the making, and you can hear them in its details. It’s an album of varying sounds and textures, with different ideas and instruments, but the tangling themes of heartbreak and hope persist throughout. The record is inspired in part by the tragedy of losing his best friend in a car accident and being unable to confront it, through periods of depression and confusion, until now.
The album is broken up with beautiful instrumentals, including ‘The Body Collapse’, where a simple piano riff is slowly surrounded by intricate, building, detailed sounds until it becomes crystal clear why his previous work has featured on popular playlists like ‘The Most Beautiful Songs In The World’. When we spoke to him a month ago, Cameron explained that “the beauty of instrumental music is that you’re able to evoke strong feelings without telling the listener how they should be feeling.”
There’s a very close, intimate feel to the album, with Cameron’s whispered delivery prompting you to lean in, listen closer, and focus on the fragility of life. Tracks like ‘Goodnight’, which closes the album, combine the whispered vocals and almost classical instrumentation for an ethereal, goosebump raising experience. ‘The Sea’, the only song here recorded outside of his home, feels just as close, despite the electronic influence.
While ‘Atoms’ is the most direct track here, with its carefully strummed acoustic guitar acting as a platform for gently soaring strings, ‘Wings’ is one of the albums main highlights. It grows slowly, in a similar manner to ‘Atoms’, but with a more cinematic quality, building up to a swirling hurricane of violins. The entire album is an emotional journey. Without much progression or even lyricism, it tells the story of tragedy and pain, and most importantly, overcoming them.