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The Owl and Bear Podcast vol. 177


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Live Review: Cloud Cult at Mr. Smalls, November 2, 2010

Photo credit: J. Walkos

A Cloud Cult show feels more like the product of an art collective than that of a band. The group is led by affable singer/guitarist Craig Minowa, whose Earthology Records is equal parts record label and environmental organization. The band also includes Minowa’s wife Connie and artist Scott West, each of whom completes an original painting on stage during the set. Watching all eight members perform, it quickly becomes clear that they have more than just music on their minds. Continue reading…

Interview: Cloud Cult

Cloud Cult are nothing if not prolific. The Minnesota band just finished up their eighth studio album, Light Chasers, which is set to hit stores on September 14th.

Light Chasers picks up right where Owl and Bear favorite Feel Good Ghosts (Tea-Partying Through Tornadoes) left off, exploring the relationship between the human experience and the unknown. Frontman Craig Minowa took some time out from tea-partying through tornadoes to talk to us about loss, the environment, and what the band has in store for us in the future. Continue reading…

Cloud Cult Reissue Two Albums, Record New One (MP3)

Cloud Cult

Cloud Cult have been riding high lately. Their two most recent albums, The Meaning of 8 and Owl&Bear favorite Feel Good Ghosts (Tea Partying Through Tornadoes), have marked a creative peak for the band, the hard-won result of ten years of touring, seemingly insurmountable hardships, and a recorded output far too large to shake a stick at. The Minnesota band even took a victory lap with last year’s No One Said It Would Be Easy, a documentary that chronicled the ebbs and flows of the group’s career.

It seems that Cloud Cult haven’t quite finished turning their collective eye toward the past, because they’re re-envisioning, remixing, remastering, rearranging, and finally rereleasing two of their older albums. On December 8th, the previously out-of-print They Live On The Sun (2003) and Aurora Borealis (2004) will be reborn, Siamese twin-style, as a double disc reissue with bonus tracks. The home-recorded albums have been given a welcome shot in the arm thanks to the remixing and remastering process, and fans of the band’s more recent output will be well served to find out how the band got to be so darn good. Here’s some info: Continue reading

Review: Cloud Cult; May 14, 2009 at The Casbah; San Diego

Cloud Cult

Cloud Cult have worked hard to get where they are. Their early albums contained moments of brilliance, but were weighed down by a lack of focus, frustrating silence, and cacophonous filler. After releasing six promising but inconsistent albums, the band finally struck gold with 2007’s The Meaning of 8, which balanced quirkiness and catharsis without succumbing to the ADD-addled wanderings of previous efforts.

They further refined this aesthetic on 2008’s Feel Good Ghosts (Tea-Partying Through Tornadoes), and in doing so crafted one of the year’s finest albums. With the one-two punch of those records, Cloud Cult had ascended to a new creative peak; naturally, the prospect of seeing them live during this renaissance promised to be thrilling and memorable. Why, then, did their May 14th performance at the Casbah prove disappointing? Continue reading