VIDEO PREMIERE: Obscured by Clouds Release New Live Video For “Faith’s Soul”
Obscured by Clouds are back better than ever, the Progressive Rock band is teaming up with VENTS for their most psychedelic live video for “Faiths' Soul” off their newest material. “Faiths’ Soul” ingathers all the world’s religiosity and dogma versus meaninglessness and distortion that subdue our consciousness and participation; such capacity to think beyond these limitations and endure has it’s own source and singularity beyond ourselves, the weight of humanity, and modern cultures’ illusions.
“Pink Floyd was really responsible for my love of music, and I don’t throw that band name down loosely,” says William Weikart, the frontman and mastermind behind Obscured By Clouds, a psychedelic, art-rock outfit that doesn’t shy away from its heavy Pink Floyd influences.Weikart delivers a brand of stoner rock that has one foot in the classics, but isn’t afraid to take charge and forge its own spacey, oft-times tripped-out path. “I delved deeply into their music and catalogs,” Weikart continues, “as I did with so many bands in an exhaustive, passionate inculcation of music and the creative process. Standing alone, Pink Floyd was everything that made music amazing, I would say. If I were laying on a beach with crashing waves in a half conscious state, there would be no better music floating across the sand than ‘Relics,’ ‘More,’ ‘The Madcap Laughs,’ or even early ‘Tangerine Dream.’ Okay, and one hundred other bands too.” It’s Weikart’s unabashed love of Pink Floyd that not only named his band, but gave him the foundation for Psycheclectic, the band’s eight track debut which found Progressive Magazine proclaiming that Obscured By Clouds “employs a hefty dose of Pink Floyd influence as a launching pad… into space/psych/prog realms, which also summons hints of Nick Drake, Bowie on barbiturates, and Hawkwind. The band deftly dabbles in acoustic texturing amidst flowing symphonic atmospheres.” For Weikart, however, the recording process is only a small part of the process. Weikart lives for the live show, both as a spectator and a performer. Recording five performances – four in Seattle and one in Los Angeles – during the Psycheclectic tour, Weikart’s Psycheclectic Records is gearing up for the October 27th, 2017 release of Thermospheric, an eight-track live album that brings Psycheclectic to life, both through an audio recording which will be released as a CD and digitally, and high-definition videos of the performance accompanying every song, which will be released on Blu-Ray. The Blu-Ray will also feature a secret track not available on the CD.
VIDEO PREMIERE: U.S. Psychedelic Rock Band Obscured By Clouds It almost feels as though you’re the only member of the audience, with the band performing solely for you!
One of the best parts of being a music writer is rediscovering bands you wrote about years ago. This is exactly what happened to me with Seattle’s Obscured By Clouds. The group’s ‘Psycheclectic’ made a strong impression back in 2009 with its combination of Pink Floyd progressive rock alongside a range of other rock influences. Eight years have gone by since then, and I was pleasantly surprised to see the band name pop up again in my inbox this past week. This time around Obscured By Clouds has put together a live album titled ‘Thermospheric’ that will be released alongside a Blu-Ray of the performance. Containing seven out of the eight songs that were on ‘Psycheclectic’ alongside two new tracks, it’s sure to serve as a great introduction to newcomers and a great way for established fans like me to hear these songs from a new angle. With ‘Thermospheric’ set for release on October 27th via the band’s own label Psycheclectic Records, today we’re excited to premiere a music video for Consider This A Message. Live albums tend to be a touchy subject among music fans, as while there have been plenty of notable ones over the decades there are plenty more that feel like quick cash-ins. You can probably think of some where the audio is hard to make out or the regular cut-ins from the audience disrupt from the performance. But that’s not the case on ‘Thermospheric’, and Consider This A Message is a perfect example. If the video didn’t specifically point out that this was a live recording you might not even realize it at first, as the instrumentals are all easy to distinguish and front man William Weikart’s vocals comes through crystal clear. It almost feels as though you’re the only member of the audience, with the band performing solely for you. As far as the music itself, though it’s a little different than what we usually cover here at Transcending Obscurity, the darker tonality and gruffer vocals of this particular track are sure to appeal to quite a few of you. The prominent bass line and drearier guitar melody that lead things off has a sound that falls somewhere between 90s hard rock and stoner/desert rock with a little bit of doom to spice things up, but there are flourishes of melody that bring about a psychedelic influence with plenty of haziness. Weikart’s vocals head towards the lower registers, at times coming off sounding a bit like Danzig. It’s the type of track that lulls you into a hazy fog but holds your attention the whole time through with sudden melodic transitions and some spontaneous soloing. The video’s worth checking out too, as trippy imagery is superimposed over the group’s performance. It’s great to see Obscured By Clouds resurface after quite a few years, and they’ve put together a live album that has production values on par with some studio efforts. Consider This A Message is one of the darker, moodier tracks the band has to offer, but if you dive into the rest of the songs you’ll discover a diverse listen that spans the entirety of the rock spectrum. ‘Thermospheric’ is out on CD, digital, and Blu-ray October 27th. Chris Dahlberg ToMetal.com
VIDEO PREMIER: Obscured By Clouds’ “Soft Cheeked And Worried”
Stereo Embers is excited to premiere the new video by Obscured By Clouds for the track “Soft Cheeked And Worried.”
Taken from the psych-art rock outfit’s upcoming live album Thermospheric (Oct 27), “Soft Cheeked And Worried” is a searing blast of dreamy riffs set against shifting soundscapes that ebb and flow with storms of synth-laden grooves, layered guitars and the kind of percussive primal stomp that will keep this track in your head all day.
The songs on the live album were captured at shows in the band’s home-field of Seattle as well as Los Angeles.
Thermospheric features eight of the nine numbers that appear on the band’s Psychecletic album as well as two new tracks (“Miraculous” and “Bleed”).
Of the album, frontman William Weikart says it’s: “The sound of five musicians rendering their love of music through their heart into sound and the songs you hear. It is always raw and on the verge of edge of feedback or meaningful lyrical vibrance. The idea is that the vastness of our perceptions are underwhelmed by our ignorance and the only way to overcome this is to extend our attention span far into the details of meaningfulness and participation.”
He goes on to add: “The instruments produce the thematic thermospheric elements; there’s a lot of sound and instrumentation going on here. The lyrics are the indulgence of commentary over the complete unknown and jagged structure of the raw instruments, semi-tones, and chords. The instrument becomes a beast, a spear, a vast bow, a laser landscape set fire by a sheet of sound and feedback, a weapon of love to subdue and maybe even slay. The venue becomes the sound reflecting off the back of the room.”
StereoEmbersMagazine.com - Alex Green
Zoe Zolofft Video Premiere
Thermospheric is the forthcoming new album from psychedelic, art-rock band Obscured By Clouds, and below is the video for their song "Zoe Zolofft".
"Zoë Zolofft" holds true as an obscure Syd Barrett-esque song in homage, a song about a girl, a sitar, and modern pharmakinetics; and concludes with the sonic imagery of the splintered spokes of a broken and wobbling wheel via Mitch Mitchell backwards Hendrix-ian backward beat.
When is a live album not a live album? As Obscured By Clouds prove, it's a moot point. Recording four Seattle shows and a further one from Los Angeles, this psychedelic, progressive outfit have collected the best moments for posterity and presented them – certainly in the audio release, I haven't seen the visual version that also exist – free of crowd noise, band interaction and, well, all the things that make a live album sound live. If, like me, you're new to a band whose Pink Floyd inspired name only really hints at what's going on, then you'd never even suspect that Thermospheric isn't simply a new studio album.
Anyway, it is live and as so brings together seven of the eight songs first released on the Psychecletic album alongside two new numbers, "Miraculous" and "Bleed". For fellow newbies, while the clues are all there – the far out album titles, lyrics about faith, space travel and the search for the soul, Pink Floyd album name used for the band moniker and spacey album art – there's also much more going on. Yes, early to mid-Floyd is used as a starting point, but what the likes of "Faith's Soul" and "Soft Cheeked And Worried" revolve round is much tougher and rougher than you might expect, even if there are numerous textures and an intentional fragility revealed in places. Frontman (and band leader) William Weikart also possesses a more forceful vocal attack than you might expect, leading a decidedly psychedelic experience to ultimately feel far heavier than initially expected. In fact with a style that at times reminds of Justin Sullivan of New Model Army, much of Thermospheric hits like a hybrid between aggressive rock and the race for space.
It's a full on experience as washes of psych- keys collide to grating guitars and an opinionated vocal stance, "Consider This A Message" conveyed as more of a challenge than a cajoling hand. Here the guitar solo snarls and snaps and reinforces what can be a persuasive approach. Although, across the eight tracks presented (nine on the visual versions) where things can be held back is through a similar pacing from song to song and that most pretty much fall into the same idea of build slow, hit hard, then taper away. Not one track shows as a potential weakness, but taken as a whole, the impact can be lost slightly along the way.
Credit to Obscured By Clouds, for while, thanks to their name, I'm sure they're sick of being asked about Pink Floyd, in the end Thermospheric hits like a reasonably individual slice of what otherwise might have been some well worn ideas. It's also worth reiterating that this is a live recording, and as such, it feels right to congratulate the band on providing seamless performances and an excellently sounding disc. So much so, that rather oddly, it really doesn't feel like a live album at all...
Track Listing 1. Soft Cheeked & Worried (Live) 2. Zoë Zolofft (Live) 3. Miraculous (Live) 4. Faiths' Soul (Live) 5. Consider This a Message (Live) 6. Cast Close the Gate (Live) 7. Love's Love (Live) 8. Bleed (Live)
Added: October 21st 2017
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Score: 3.5 Stars
Related Link: Thermospheric @ Obscured By Clouds online
2017 - Obscured By Clouds Thermospheric
This is a live recording to celebrate the release of Obscured by Clouds' debut album Psycheclectic. Not being familiar with that album, the songs get some description here, as well. This earns the prog tag for its Pink Floyd influenced style of music/ That's mixed with a David Bowie and Nick Drake cocktail with some metal thrown in from the background of founding member William Weikart. This all culminates for an interesting mixture of colossal proportions, while obviously paying homage to said artists. Six cuts from the album are featured with two new previously unreleased songs added to the show for something new.
Track by Track Review:
Soft Cheeked & Worried To start with this plays like a full concert album, but one track is dropped and two new ones added. That is as much as I know. As you take in the first few seconds it produces a feeling like you’re experiencing Pink Floyd with David Bowie guesting on vocals. This is done to an awesome effect. In fact, it comes on so strong you have to make time to take it seriously if you haven’t heard the song before. The thunder and rain effect at the end is a cool topper.
Zoe Zolofit This has some great sitar lines throughout it, with an esoteric vibe that won’t quit. The track itself is somewhere between David Bowie and the Moody Blues sounding like they’re trying hard to be pop, which can’t be a bad experiment. The drums help keep it enjoyable.
Miraculous "Epic" is the word, once this gets going. It takes you back to the psychedelic times without losing you in the idea of visiting the past. There’s clearly a storyline to the lyrics, and I sense some Peter Gabriel influence, which also doesn’t hurt it. It picks up nicely toward the end and takes it completely over the top with searing guitars and mad vocals. This is just an overall jubilant performance, even though an obviously dark tale. There’s a great deep track underneath it all. And this is a new piece, not featured on the debut album.
Faith’s Soul This is even more interesting, as the show starts to peak. The melodies are fantastic and the vocals more contained, with excellent guitars pretty much leading you by the ear. It’s not the best but not the worst track in the set. It does have a certain accessibility about it. But it’s still perhaps on the heavy side of soft rock in structure.
Consider This A Message An even better track comes to life here with a commanding presence to draw you into the whole picture all of a sudden. This is where it defines the prog definition as far as material goes, and likely the best part of the show from a listening standpoint. There will be a Blu-Ray with a secret track released, as well. It contains a high definition video of every track. This is as good a time as any to mention that, as it gets easy to picture when hearing this track performed live.
Cast Close To The Gate This track itself doesn’t resonate too well with me, but it’s bombastic stuff, if you like that sort of thing. As for performances it does the business as well as anything else in the set, and I like the sound effects.
Love’s Love A ballad enters the scene at just the right time, and it’s all very cinematic sounding before it turns into a more pop laden track with a romantic feel that suits the title. It comes along appropriately and once again well-performed with a lot of heart and soul. It also features a few nice mood changes.
Bleed This is the second of two new tracks that aren’t featured on the debut album. Wind sounds kick this one off, and a haunting acoustic guitar riff takes over and dominates the entire show. Some string backing here and there adds a nice texture, but it’s mostly the guitar that carries the show on this melancholy moment. It manages to pick up ferociously in the center before coming back down in classic fashion. It bites at just the right times, and that’s why it bleeds. A lot of percussive energy winds up displayed.
The Drip Feed (Spoken Word) The set closes with something that really isn’t spoken word form, but plays out that way because of how the vocals carry the lyrics. It’s a narrative thing and a great closer that probably could’ve been used up by any track in the set, but I’m sure it all makes sense in the thick of the Psycheclectic plot.
2017 Music Street Journal Review - Larry Toering
Interview with Willaim Weikart & RJ Formenta (Vents)
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