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Atlanta, Georgia, United States | SELF

Atlanta, Georgia, United States | SELF
Band Alternative Rock


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Life + Times premiere - Life + Times

“They’re people who know what electronic music sounds like, but also know what instruments sound like. It’s not compartmentalized like: “now we’re playing an instrument so it needs to be clean” or “now we’re programming so the cuffs are off”. I like that: trying to blur the lines between what’s live and what’s not live, and have it not really matter. Just have it sound cool.” - John Davis, owner Bunker Studios (Brooklyn, NY)

Many bands both past and present have continuously attempted to fit a specific mold that has been constructed by the music industry. More often than not, it is the record executives that decide their fate. Once in a blue moon, a band comes along that breaks through the stereotypes that come with being creators, and open up the world’s eyes to something different. Last week, I was able to experience this at The Five Spot in the heart of Little Five Points, that is known for showcasing multi-genre music from all over the world. Walking into the seedy venue, I saw stickers and posters plastered everywhere of bands/artists that have or will be gracing the stage in the future. The band that was going to be performing that night was Cloudeater, a local Atlanta alternative rock/electronic group that creates an atmosphere that you happily get lost in, and the need to find an exit route is immediately forgotten. Those that scour for the experimental side of any genre of music were present, and eager to begin their journey. I could easily see that everyone who was there were looking for something within the music that is not accessible within the normal outlets. Cloudeater was their solution.
At the conclusion of the opening acts, five young musicians came walking onto the stage to set up with anticipation, and an immense amount of certainty that the crowd was going to walk away from their set with a whole new outlook on what a ‘rock band’ is. On the opening song “Not Enough”, Cloudeater created a backdrop for what was to come, with very translucent pads, and driving drum pattern. The guitar chords cut right through the dreamlike state, while the vocal line danced on top with an ethereal manner. They continued to perform a handful of songs from their recent album release called Sun And Sidearm, as well as a couple from their previously released EP Greatest Tragedy that sustained their unique sound. Knowing their material and being a fluent listener before the show, I definitely heard a certain rawness that was added to their overall sound that enforced their “just-regular-guys-that-make-music” persona. In each word sung and note played, there was a monumental amount of control and conviction that plummeted the crowd right into Cloudeater’s world. All imperfections were forgotten.
The end of their set was finished with a brand new song called “Idiot’s March”, that will be on their next project. It still contains the essence of Cloudeater, but brings another ingredient that amplifies the band’s overall sound. They also announced that their next show will be this friday, October 21st, opening for Little Dragon at The Masquerade. - Stupid Dope

This may not be a universal experience, but just about every kid who grew up in the suburbs of a major metropolitan area and later moved to the city remembers his or her first adventure “downtown.” Generally the situation progresses somewhere along the lines of said kid hitting his teenage years, getting introduced to/latching onto some sort of counterculture ideology, and then looking for more kids who think the same way. For whatever reason this usually leads us as juveniles to seek the city. For myself, I started skateboarding and all I wanted was to hit the streets of Atlanta and never come back. But kids flock to the city for a hundred different reasons: music, parties, jobs, drugs, you name it.

I remember my first few trips to Atlanta not by the specific things I saw, but by a series of emotions and feelings, thoughts and inspirations that settled upon my young mind at the time. Most teenagers are searching for some sort of meaning and I was obviously no exception. By walking the streets of Atlanta, going to rock shows and chilling with like-minded friends, I felt more at home then I ever did as the weird kid in suburbia. It felt larger than life to be a part of the city, to get it’s dirt and dust on me, and to lock into it’s vibrant pulse full of life, death and the tragedy of being one forgotten part of an enormous group of people. The whole “alone in a crowded room” idea had such an enticingly bittersweet attraction to me. Although I was experiencing these feelings for the first time, they were already familiar to my soul, which had been searching for them for a long time.

Cloudeater just released a new album titled Sun and Sidearm. If you were tracking on the two paragraphs above, go spin this record. It sounds like nothing you have heard before, but it’s exactly what you’ve been looking for. And, honestly, when I listen to it, I’m a kid experiencing a new city again. Cloudeater layers so many levels of grit, beauty and tragedy on this record that it could have been the moody soundtrack to my youth in Atlanta. Subtle, R&B guitar parts get blended into Britpop-esque vocals and bounced off distorted drum parts and fuzzy bass. The whole vibe sounds like an electro band playing songs with real instruments, lending an organic, rock and roll vibe to their foundation that is otherwise rhythm and blues. The songs are upbeat and rhythmic enough to bob your head to and mellow enough to put on when you are climbing into bed at night. While some of the musical parts may sound broken and jarring individually, when everything is put together and taken in context, it’s nothing short of the beauty and elegance of a symphony. There’s a filter of peace and serenity to the entire effort that’s like the gloom of a rainy day descending on the broken dust and rubble of the inner city.

If you try to put Sun and Sidearm into one genre, you are going to find an impossible task on your hands. And that’s what makes the release so perfectly “Atlantian.” Atlanta has always been the home to some of the worlds best hip hop and R&B, and you’ll find a plethora of beats and rhythms on this record that are inspired by those genres. In recent years, indie bands have begun to carve a niche sound for themselves in regards to the rest of the nation, and you can definitely hear their influence on this record as well. The heavier rhythm section of songs such as “The Dive” bring to mind sludge and metal bands, genres that have always been a staple in this city. Indeed, Sun and Sidearm seems to tastefully sample from every genre that makes up Atlanta’s overall music scene. But beyond genre, this record simply sounds like a walk around the city, though I don’t believe that will limit the release to regional success. If you are not from Atlanta you can still “get” and love this record. But there are definitely certain parts that, to me, evoke feelings that only folks who live here are going to get. Call me crazy, but I think it’s true.

Sun and Sidearm is a beautiful, perfectly written release that is put together with precision, purpose and expert craftsmanship. The band displays a fearless emotional honesty that is both refreshing and shockingly innocent. With moments ranging from beautifully intricate shoegaze to heavy hip hop, this record is as diverse and dynamic a local record as you’ll hear all year. Cloudeater has so many different threads woven into the fabric, you’ll be hard pressed not find something you can at least relate to and enjoy. If you are like me, however, you’ll find it absolutely enrapturing. - Latest Disgrace

Cloudeater stands at a crossroads where trip-hop and post-industrial rock converge with blue-eyed soul. As unnatural (and uninteresting) as that may seem on paper, the Atlanta five-piece has fostered a unexpectedly compelling sound with its second full-length, Sun and Sidearm. There's even a potential hit brewing here with "Hardly Wait" as narcotic, techno-driven bass throbs and monster melodies grumble and swoon. It's a sound that isn't easily characterized, but there's a definite edge to the album's concise, three-minute-plus numbers that place Cloudeater in a narrow margin of post-'90s electronic rock acts that have a grasp on its aesthetic and are able to give it an edge. That aesthetic isn't fully realized yet, but songs such as "Blurry Wisdom," "The Dive" and "Nothing Critical" hit pretty close to the mark and underscore the kind of depth and musical ideals that define Cloudeater's sound and vision, and it's entrancing to watch it all take shape. (4 out of 5 stars) - Creative Loafing Atlanta

Cloudeater - The last time I caught a band from the deep south here at the Velvet Lounge (TeePee) I was suitably blown away. And this band from Atlanta pushed the limits even further skyward tonight. It looked like it would be a little keys/electronics heavy with a couple spots on stage set up for that, but immediately the drums, bass, and guitar lock into a sinister groove. The key/electronic guys cut in at various times as one takes over the lead vocals. He moves from a smoother Alan Vega into a very high quality style with quite a range. It seems that these parts just do not match if I try to look at it clinically, but there was never a sound out of place. I almost never discuss the overused 'synergy' concept, but we really do have it here with a lot of simple parts not terribly interesting by themselves combine into on cohesive and creative powerhouse. Imagine Muse cover PiL with Gary Numan somewhere in there. I could go further, but it would not do it justice. The reasonably sized Tuesday night crowd is as into it as I am. I hope these guys work to find their audience, because there are loads of music fans out there that are salivating for music this good. - DC Rock

Since their inception in 2009, the Atlanta five piece Cloudeater has found itself at the cross-section of many different genres: hip-hop, heavy rock and electronica are all there in equal parts on their debut album Sun and Sidearm. You can listen to the whole "reboot" of the album at their Soundcloud here, which features two new tracks not on the original release. The group is currently at work on their sophomore effort with the very talented Prefuse 73, which will be released early next year. Keep your ear out for this band, it's hard to imagine they'll go anywhere but up from here.

Also, check out a single from the debut record, and hear Cloudeater expand on their sound in a slow-building track called "Blurry Wisdom" below.

Read more: Get Some 'Blurry Wisdom' from Cloudeater
Live Music, Right Now - Baeblemusic

CLOUDEATER broke onto the scene in 2009, rising from depths of Atlanta’s musical underground to open for big names like N.E.R.D. and Girl Talk. Well, fast forward a little bit and the five-piece band have an LP, Sun and Sidearm, to their name and a sound that cuts through the bullshit.

Take “The Dive” for example, a lesser-hyped track from the LP. The first listen caught my attention, but it was not until the fourth and fifth listens that CLOUDEATER’s subtly heavy (paradox much?) progressions wrapped themselves around me. The vocals remind me of Thom Yorke a bit, which makes sense considering the ensemble cites Radiohead as a major influence. I don’t know about you, but they are officially on my radar. - Indie Shuffle

Cloudeater are pieces of a lot of things you’ve heard (and loved) before, but manage to wrap it in something completely unique. Their latest effort, “Sun and Sidearm” is solid in its melancholy melody, ethereal spaces, and dirty drums. In one moment triphop, in another Sigur Ros, and in others, glimmers of Gorillas-esque R&B hooks. The track “Hardly Wait” enters with an infectious chorus, simple structure, while fuzz and percussion impart head-nodding genre obliteration. The functional diversity is what sets this music apart, as the vocals linger over top of compositions that only in recent years you might expect from 5-piece outfits like Atlanta’s Cloudeater. “The Dive” evidences that formula while cementing itself in your third eye’s Ipod, as its latter stages texturally drift into the falsetto funk of “Nothing Critical.” The releases’ title track weighs in perfectly as its conclusion, softly lulling Cloudeater’s stripped down breaks and unspeakably good vocals to sleep. Having opened for Cody Chestnutt, Girl Talk, and N.E.R.D., it’s clear this band should be lauded for this superlative effort. - I Paint My Mind

“This indie alternative band is making a new sound in Atlanta for underground music. Cloudeater is a mixture of alternative, hip-hop, electronic, and indie rock all in one. From their first EP release, “Greatest Tragedy”, it is noticeable that with the second release “CE_EP1?, they have matured and defined their sound in the industry. Cloudeater is COMMON(amazing).” -

"in a word: timeless." -

“They’re incredibly solid, studio-savvy musicians whose sound is emblematic of a new style of eclectic record-makers who are happy to take inspiration for a compelling line or interesting texture, wherever it may come from.” -

“With a dynamic combination of Justin Timberlake’s falsetto and John Legend’s sultry tone, singer/songwriter Sam Dew’s charismatic voice reaches out through the speakers and grabs the listener by the ears. Confidently moving his voice from song to song, this front man can’t help but make the listener feel his pain, pleasure, and passion.”

“The meat of the music is based in a live rock sound, but the band seamlessly mixes in music samples, drum machine hits, and synthesized effects to give the songs an even more layered and richer quality. The EP offers a variety of styles and is reminiscent of contemporary soul pop, 70’s soul, and even classic rock.”


Greatest Tragedy EP - released 4/10
CE_EP1 - released 4/11
Sun and Sidearm - released 9/11



Since emerging in 2009, CLOUDEATER has quickly established a strong presence in the Atlanta music scene. With their debut LP, Sun and Sidearm, the 5-piece ensemble showcases their continued evolution toward a unique genre-bending sound. Citing influences such as Radiohead, The Flaming Lips, and Nine Inch Nails, their music draws from an organic live rock core while melding electronic elements and stirring vocals. The overall result is progressive yet warmly familiar, slating CLOUDEATER as one of the most intriguing new bands to check for in 2012.

We've been able to develop a strong following here in Atlanta, having headlined at places like the Earl, the Masquerade, and Terminal West. We've also had the pleasure to open for bands such as Little Dragon, Metronomy, and Gardens & Villa, and we recently released an exclusive download-only track with rapper Wale, which received over 15,000 plays the first day it was released.