London-based Australian songwriter MF Tomlinson has released a new song and video called “A Cloud”, his first new music since last year’s beautiful debut album Strange Time and also his first released through PRAH Recordings. The new track picks up right where the last album left off, as Tomlinson explains:
“A Cloud is about how painful it is to live without your innermost desires. It is, in the same breath, about how beautiful life is despite all of its sadness, and how even the smallest moments can satisfy your spirit. It begins where Strange Time leaves off. In my apartment, from my window we move through scenes of the street, through memories and hallucinations.”
Tomlinson puts us in situ from the off, looking out the window, pining to be out there amidst it all – but, this being deep in lockdown, it’s not possible. Instead, he is content to observe; he sees an unwell person ranting, people listening to reggaeton in the car park outside the Travelodge, a cloud trying to tempt him into gloominess – all the while the stunning arrangement of synth and strings makes these unsightly visions seem genuinely fascinating and delightful. Gradually, there is still a tug towards depression, the titular cloud suggesting that the songwriter follow it into a spell of gloom. Just when it seems Tomlinson might give in – the arrangement swelling to a dramatic point – his partner comes home, scaring away the cloud, and the songwriter remembers “to hear your voice call across the hall / that’s what I live in the city for.”
“A Cloud” comes with a stunning video by Daisy JT Smith, which intriguingly concludes by saying this is just part one. Could another album be on the way? Only time will tell.