Nestled in the mountains of Northwest Georgia, Cloudland Canyon State Park is home to breathtaking gorges, waterfalls, and countless miles of gorgeous trails just waiting to be explored. So, it makes sense that Athens, GA four-piece Cloudland would take inspiration from this remarkable geography for their name, as they deftly work at creating music that exhibits that same sort of dramatic perspective and emotional immediacy. They’ve also spent time camping there which only reinforced that idea of shared experiences which connects each member of the band to this specific place.
Over four years after first coming together, the band is finally ready to share their debut album Where We Meet, which is due out July 2. By compiling an extraordinary cross-section of indie rock, pop, and folk music, the band has carved out a mesmerizing musical niche where their collective influences and imaginations can run wild. Like their topographical namesake, the songs on their upcoming record traverse an uncontainable landscape filled with unexpected overhangs and crags filled with rhythmic detours and surprising melodic divergencies.
On their latest single “St. Elmo”, the band mixes an insightful look into the comfort of companionship backed by a spry brew of indie pop contours and affecting vocal theatrics. The guitars jangle, crunch, and echo out for miles as the band namechecks areas around the state park where they’ve spent time. There’s a wistfulness here, of memories forged and kept, and a look at what choices had to be made to create those memories. The song suggests that when we have someone we can trust and who is keen to share in our life experiences, our world benefits from a clarity rarely seen or felt otherwise.
“’St. Elmo’ is about having someone by your side that can take all the confusion of self-doubt away by just holding your hand,” the band reveals. “Even when we don’t see ourselves as someone worth loving. Someone has our backs. They clear our mind.”
The track seeks to lift up our viewpoint, almost as high as those mountains in Northwest Georgia – to provide care and relief when we most need it. There are days when the darkness seems more intent on slipping past our defenses, but there are ways that we can keep it out even when we feel as though we have nothing left to give. Sometimes we just need to rely on each other, and “St. Elmo” provides a narrative which describes the small ways in which others can help us and, conversely, how we can be that support for those who might need it.