Interview :: Cloud Control
November 28th 2013
It’s been a big bloody year for our favourite indie rock / hit-ya-in-the-feels band, Cloud Control.
Having just finished a massive tour with Local Natives throughout Europe for their much-loved sophomore album Dream Cave, CCs front-man Alister Wright had a chat with FBi’s Samantha Groth before the band embark on an equally huge tour of the USA and head home to Australia for St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival.
Oh, and didyaknow we’re selling Cloud Control’s doodle?
Sam: I saw that you guys played in Lisbon recently. Are you back in the UK now?
Alister: Yep, back home in London. We had a pretty insane tour with Local Natives. It was like 30-something shows all over Europe.
Where is your favourite place to play over there?
I think the general consensus in the band is we love playing in Amsterdam, but this time around we had awesome shows in Spain. We’ve toured around quite a lot and so we’ve met people and end up getting the same people coming to the shows. We’ll hang out the next day and people take us around the town so you get to see a lot of the places, which is cool.
And you’re coming back to Australia in January to play Laneway Festival, which hits Sydney on February 2. Are you looking forward to coming home?
I love coming home. We’ve been back like three or four times already this year. It’s always so good to come back to Sydney and see all your friends.
Who are you most excited to play next to at Laneway festival?
Seeing Warpaint will be really cool. I am really looking forward to seeing Killer Mike [Run the Jewels] play as well. I really liked his album.
Something to look forward to in your set at Laneway is in the middle of your live performance of ‘Gold Canary’ you slip in a bit of ‘Pepper’ by Butthole Surfers. Where did that come from?
Aw man. When I was a kid and that song came out, it was one of my favourite songs. I can remember listening to the radio and just hoping it would come on. You know, these were pre-internet days. It’s so surreal. Just one in a million that song.
I always play it and then I’ll sing ‘Loser’ by Beck over the top, and it sounds pretty ridiculous.
Yeah, that would totally work really well.
The ‘Dojo Rising’ video clip features some pretty spooky clowns. A few months after you released it, Northampton in England was plagued by a spooky clown of their own. Do you feel responsible for that?
… No comment.
You’ve got some pretty cool videos. Do you have a favourite that you’ve done so far?
I think Dojo is my favourite so far. Interestingly, the video was filmed in Bolivia so the little girl who’s singing the song doesn’t speak English and had to learn the whole song phonetically- which I thought was pretty amazing. She did such a good job.
That’s awesome. I was going through the music library at FBi the other day and found a CD you guys dropped in on open day quite a few years ago… Looking back at when you dropped that off, did you see yourself ending up where you are now?
Oh not at all! No way. You know, it’s great to be able to play music as- well that’s what we do. At that stage I still thought I’d be finishing my architecture degree and going and getting a job and doing regular life stuff. But you just never know! Life is like a box of chocolates.
You never know what to expect. You could end up as the secret guest for FBi Turns 10! Obviously it has been a big year for you guys and you’re doing a lot of touring come the New Year. Do you think you’ll get a chance to write and record music any time soon?
We’ve got about a month off over Christmas so I’m pretty psyched to start writing some music again. I don’t think we’ll end up releasing something for another year at least. But it always feels good to have a bit of time to get creative again.
When you are writing and recording, how do you figure out what direction an album is going to go in?
I think we just write the songs and then the album sort of takes care of itself. We’ve only done two albums but I think both times it was almost like a Ouija board- You know how everyone puts their fingers on it and then it just makes a word? It was kind of like that. We were just all doing our thing and then the album is what came out. There is no driver. We could be going anywhere.
Dream Cave has bits recorded in an actual cave; do you think you’ll continue that kind of involvement with your next record?
Who knows? Recording in a cave was pretty cool. I like the idea of recording in a place that sounds really nice to begin with and then you don’t have to do as much work later on because from the start it sounds really interesting. I can see us doing something like that again for sure.
You could go Dream Mountain and get a bit ethereal.
Hahaha. Dream mountain for sure.
Or Dream Forest and become a folk band… Maybe Dream River; get your country on?
Yeah, get the country on. I mean, we’ve got a lot of options.
WHO :: Cloud Control
WHAT :: St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival
WHEN :: Sunday 2nd February 2014
WHERE :: Sydney College of Arts, Rozelle
HOW MUCH :: $150 + bf from Laneway’s website
READ :: Album of the Week Review – Cloud Control ‘Dream Cave’
WATCH :: Cloud Control ‘Dojo Rising’ live in the studio