Cobalt Cranes
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Cobalt Cranes

Los Angeles, California, United States | SELF

Los Angeles, California, United States | SELF
Band Rock Punk




"Cobalt Cranes featured on Time Warner Cable's SoCal Beat"

Cobalt Cranes were interviewed by SoCal Beats Julie Garcia. Show broadcasted locally on channel 101. See link below - Time Warner Cable

"Featured Musician: Cobalt Cranes"

You might know nothing of the band’s history, but by the time the opening bass notes of “Head in the Clouds” pulsate through your speakers, you’ll know just about all you’ll need to know about Cobalt Cranes. In a time when guitar-rock has fallen by the wayside to some degree, Cobalt Cranes bring the same rock’n’roll bite that Sonic Youth and the Pixies brought in their heyday. There’s equal parts craft and reckless abandon factored into their densely layered sound.

As the summer officially arrives here in the Northern hemisphere, I’ll be the first to acknowledge that there’s no better time to soak up what Cobalt Cranes are firing out of their amps. Tracks like “Salvation” and “Count the Ways” (that quick guitar breakdown midway through!) should put you in the perfect mood to roll down your windows during your hot summer nights.

Bangstyle had the absolute pleasure of picking the brains of Cobalt Cranes’ masterminds Tim and Kate.
BANGSTYLE: How did the band get started? Was it an organic process or was everyone looking to start a band?

Tim: The band started in a pretty organic way. I was in another band at the time, and one day I left a bass at Kate’s. Pretty soon we started playing punk songs together. I think the first one that we learned was “Chinese Rocks” by Johny Thunders and the Heartbreakers.

Kate: Tim and I met at a house party and hit it off. Soon after, we started jamming on Ramones songs which slowly turned into us writing our own songs. I’ve always played music but never in a band setting. It was something I had always wanted to persue but never found the right people.

BANGSTYLE: How do you get into a headspace to write?

Kate: I write all the time. It’s a sense that creeps in and I know it’s time to write. It’s hard to control. It’s like eating to me, I feel the hunger pangs and so I eat.

Tim: I’m always recording little riffs or parts of songs. Then, I take that little riff and expand on it, adding parts and turning it into a song. Somewhere in that process a vocal melody will start to form, and then I write lyrics. I like to write at night a lot. It’s like a getaway, a chance to write about your experiences or what you are dreaming about.
BANGSTYLE: What is your first musical memory? Did you know you wanted to be a musician right away?

Tim: Opening up an Aerosmith tape and listening to it. And going to a lot of concerts at a young age. I was around music all of my life, and I always enjoyed going to concerts, listening to music and playing it. But it wasn’t until my late teens that I really started pursuing it as something that I wanted to do for real.

Kate: My first musical memory was from pre-school. The entire school had a meeting every Friday and everyones parents would come. My class performed ‘Rock Around The Clock” by Bill Hailey. I thought it was the coolest song ever. I remember getting up in front of the entire school and feeling like a bad ass because we got to sing that song while other classes had to sing more generic children’s songs.

BANGSTYLE: What’s been your favorite venue to perform at? Why?

Kate: I don’t really have a favorite venue. Any place that has a decent PA and a crowd, I’m good.

Tim: We just played a really fun show in Tulsa, Oklahoma on tour. It was a cool bar, and it was pretty packed. We played on the floor, and everyone at the venue was really going wild.
BANGSTYLE: What are some of your non-musical influences that inform the music?

Tim: Living in LA, the history of the city has been a big inspiration. So many great musicians have played here, and so much amazing music has been written and recorded here. It inspires us to try and live up to those great artists that have come before us. And the “LA sound” is something that we try to interpret in our own way.

Kate: Reading, it really opens me up.

BANGSTYLE: If you could choose one band that you admire who is it and for what reason?

Kate: Sonic Youth has always been a band I admire. They were so stubbornly creative and totally unique. They approached music from such a different perspective. They grew over time and became such a huge influence to so many great bands.

Tim: I would have to go with the Rolling Stones. They have explored so many different genres of music, from blues to rock ‘n roll to country, punk and disco, just to name a few. But they made music that had real emotion, especially in those golden years from the late 60s to early 70s. Their guitar playing is hard to beat.

BANGSTYLE: You’re exiled to a desert island, but are allowed to take 5 albums with you. What are they and why?

X- Los Angeles.
Pixies – Surfer Rosa.
Stooges – Raw Power.
Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin III.
Sonic Youth – Goo.

Tim: The first one would be Exile on Main St. by the Stones. This one has everything – the rockers, the slow tunes, and everything in between. Amazing songs, raw recordings, just the best. Next, would probably be a Led Zeppelin album, maybe the - BangStyle

"Interview with Cobalt Cranes"

See link - TAIL Magazine (Berlin)

"On Deck: Cobalt Cranes"

Los Angeles-based rock band Cobalt Cranes deal in shades of 60's garage punk, 90's shoegaze, and dusty psych rock. Also relying heavily on the California desert hard rock of the 70's, Tim Foley and Kate Betuel have been writing and recording together since the two met in LA over five years ago. They began recording demos in Foley’s apartment and soon had enough material for their first EP In Media Rez. Pulling together a live band in 2009, Foley and Betuel set out on several southwest and pacific northwest tours and began a run of small label cassettes and 7?‘s leading up to the release of their debut LP Head In The Clouds.
Foley and Betuel recently took some time for Beats Per Minute to write about some of the records which have influenced the musical direction of Cobalt Cranes. Ranging from the more recent post punk rock of Cloud Nothings to the classic rock tendencies of The Rolling Stones and Iggy & the Stooges, the influences that have shaped the band and its members are readily apparent in the songs on Cobalt Cranes’ debut. Pulsing with a rhythm and life all their own, these songs feel stitched together from the best parts of each artist’s musical predisposition. Check out Foley and Betuel’s complete list below in the latest installment of our On Deck series.
- Beats Per Minute

"Cobalt Cranes Make a Magnet Mixtape"

Cobalt Cranes hang their hats in the subtropical-Mediterranean climate of Los Angeles. The garage duo makes dream-gaze rock that’s misted over by foggy psychedelic grit. Kate Betuel and Tim Foley have just released their latest LP, Head In The Clouds (Anticc), and also hooked MAGNET up with a 10-track mix tape. Check it out below. - See more at: - Magnet Magazine

"Cobalt Cranes, "Head In The Clouds' --Free Mp3 Download"

Cobalt Cranes, 'Head in the Clouds' -- Free MP3 Download
Posted on Apr 26th 2013 10:50AM by Cameron MatthewsComments

pic:Alison Kaylor
Artist: Cobalt Cranes
Hail From: Los Angeles
Song: 'Head in the Clouds'
Album: Head In The Clouds [iTunes] [Amazon]
Sounds Like: Raveonettes, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

In Their Words: "'Head in the Clouds' sparkles and glows like a Polaroid dream. Moonscape nostalgia with a gritty modern edge." -- Guitarist Tim Foley - SPINNER

"Stream 'Head In The Clouds' Free"

Stream Cobalt Cranes debut album 'Head In The Clouds' free all this week - SPINNER

"Premiere: Head In The Clouds Music Video"

When Cobalt Cranes’ Kate Betuel rolls up beside your outstretched thumb on the street, you know you’re living every wanderer’s wet dream. Folded in with her humming vocals in the LA band’s new video for their debut album’s eponymous single, “Head in the Cloud,” the image of Kate’s bottle-blonde hair whipping through the wind as she swoops her purple Challenger through winding desert streets matches perfectly to the song’s momentum-holding beat, making for the perfect good-weather driving song, even if you have to hitch from your sofa.

In the video, the proud California kids make a quick pit stop to step into an alternative universe made up of rotating lights and rainbow guitars – you know, typical road trip times – before escaping back to the open road, all along bleached in sunshine and dyed in sparkling, shifting colors. Even with all the psych-out imagery, Cobalt Cranes have something more akin to alt-rock radio, when bands like the Cranberries were still buzzing through. A bit grunge-y, a bit shoe-gaze-y, a bit unreal, the LA duo definitely live up to their reputation, and even the ostrich inside of you who might want to keep your head down while spring is sprung won’t be able to help sticking its head in the clouds for this one.
- Impose Magazine

"Cobalt Cranes Cerebral & Cardiac Rock 'N' Roll"

By Danny De Maio

For a band to do shoegaze well today without being filed under “My Bloody Valentine-indebted” is nearly impossible. But some bands are able to jump that barrier and exist in the realm of the genre. Ladies and gentlemen, with that said, I introduce you to Cobalt Cranes and their new album Head In The Clouds.

It’s a fine day when a band is able to marry the guitar technique of 50's doo-wop and Sonic Youth’s aggressive fuzz, and that is exactly what we get in “How Many Fingers” and “Shake.” Hard-charging moments like these aren’t all that Cobalt Cranes have in-store though. Some of the album’s boldest songs are the midtempo one’s anchored by some gorgeous female vocals. “Head in the Clouds” and “Salvation” have become tracks that I’ve been playing repeatedly throughout the last couple weeks, not even thinking about needing to write a review. When you get a ton a press blasts from bands, it’s sometimes difficult to sort through it all, but I can say with complete honesty that Cobalt Cranes slowing eased their way into my ears and genuinely won me over.

Cobalt Cranes own a power in their songwriting that is usually lacking when bands decide they want to run their guitar through 8 pedals. Instead of relying on the pedals to make their guitar parts pop, they actually write bold, energetic guitar riffs. You won’t have to stretch your ears to catch all the nuances to persuade yourself that this is a great guitar rock band. All it’s going to take is hearing “Devil’s All Around,” the anthem-ready “Golden Mansion,” and the addictive “Count the Ways.” I’m willing to bet that all you’ll need is the guitar breakdown at 2:15 to win you over completely.

The Los Angeles band fills a major hole in the psych-rock scene after Darker My Love meandered into oblivion. There’s nothing challenging to the “system” of rock’n’roll here, and perhaps that’s the point. Los Angeles bands often get either too caught up in the easiest way to cash or the easiest way to credibility (“Hey, dudes, let’s just play the same riff for 35 minutes and scream Bukowski poems over the guitar fuzz!”), but Cobalt Cranes know that they’re able to write great songs without ditching their effects pedals. What Head In The Clouds shows itself to be is a full-bodied, consistent rock’n’roll album that’s as concerned with the heart as it is the mind. - BangStyle

"Indie stuff: Interview with the Cobalt Cranes"

Cobalt Cranes, the psychedelic garage punk outfit from LA, is playing tonight in Denver at the Merchant Mile High Saloon. We had a chance to talk with Tim Foley and Kate Betuel about their passion for their music and about their debut album, Head in the Clouds.303: How did you guys get started?

Tim: We started as a band, we met at a party.

Kate: We talked about music and recording all night.

Tim: Yeah, I had a little recording studio set up in my room at the place I was living, and Kate came over to a party over there and we just started talking about recording and music. And one day I left a bass guitar over at her house. And we just started making lo-fi recordings at my house. And that’s how we started.

Kate: We learned by playing Ramones songs and Johnny Thunders and the Heartbreakers. The stuff that would inspire anybody to pick up an instrument and play.

303: How did you guys come into your current style? Which is a bit more psychedelic than say The Ramones.

Tim: Yeah, this time we really wanted to push what we were capable of doing with songwriting and with recording so we spent a little more time than we had in the past going to different studios and exploring a more psychedelic sound. We were listening to a lot more psychedelic stuff when we were recording this album too.

303: Like who?

Tim: Moon Duo we really like. And another one: The Black Rider.

Kate: I think we were just ready to come up with a new sound ourselves. We had done the one minute barn-burner songs, so we were just kind of like, “What if we just made the song a little bit longer?” And we wanted to hear different sounds.

Tim: It kind of just came down to wanting to make a record that we wanted to listen to. We kept talking about that. There were all these different sounds that we wanted to hear that we would hear on other records. One band would have one element of something we liked and another band would have another element. But we hadn’t really heard everything we liked in one record. So we wanted to try to do that.

Kate: That’s what I like about the album format, is that you can have 12 songs to explore tons of different ideas.

Tim: We really looked up to bands like Led Zeppelin and later-Beatles stuff, The Stones, a lot of their records incorporate a lot of different sounds in one album. That’s what we were really trying to explore.

303: What were you guys trying to show people that they’d never seen before, specifically?

Kate: I think we wanted it to be a rock record, that could still get dirty and still could move you like a one minute punk song. And I think that was our goal, to take that element that we liked about our early stuff and stretch it through and present it a little differently. And that was the challenge that we saw making this, but it was also what made it fun. We still wanted it to come through as powerful rock songs.

Tim: One thing that we do, and I don’t know how much other bands do it, but a big part of our process is home recording. So we incorporate a lot of home recording elements that I think make the sounds unique and that make it different than what you’d normally hear with a band in a studio, recording in a normal way. We try to blend the produced elements with home recording stuff.

303: How long have you guys been playing music together? And are you guys seeing the success you want to see?

Tim: We’ve been a band for four years now. We’re starting to get there. This album is a big step forward for us. We’ve never done a full-length album before. We’ve done EPs and singles, but we’ve never taken the full step to doing albums. We’re excited to have a full album to tour behind and promote and get as many people listening to it as we can.

Kate: And it’s expensive to record. So we were finally able to bite the bullet and do it. It’s really fun, we’re already excited to do our next one.

Tim: We do all the writing and recording, and then we have two other guys playing live with us on the road. Nine Inch Nails was a big influence, and was a big inspiration to us.

Kate: If Josh Freese wants to come on tour with us, we are so down. We are so down, Josh, if you’re listening. Trent too, why not? We’ll take him.

303: You guys are based out of LA, how do you like the Denver area?

Tim: We played in Denver one time before, and it was a fun town. It’s a cool town. It has some elements of what California feels like, but in a completely different setting. There’s a good, friendly vibe to Denver.

303: What can people expect if they come to your show?

Tim: We’re pretty excited about our lineup right now, we have a strong lineup. And a really good live show. And we’re just excited to get that out there.
- 303 Magazine

"Cobalt Cranes announce National Tour"

Cobalt Cranes have released Shake, the first release from their new album Head In The Clouds, premiering April 9th. With the release of this album they have announced their National Tour.

Cobalt Cranes will be playing in Portland on April 17th at The Tube as well as April 18th at The Kenton Club. - bePortland

"Soundcheck: Cobalt Cranes"

L.A. duo pops out left coast sun psych with it's Head In The Clouds - Austin Chronicle

"Soundcheck: Cobalt Cranes"

L.A. duo pops out left coast sun psych with it's Head In The Clouds - Austin Chronicle

"Cobalt Cranes Go Full Throttle"

On Cobalt Cranes’ new song “Shake,” the L.A. duo says this track sets the tone for their new album Head in the Clouds. ”‘Shake’ begins full throttle, because you’ve already traveled through the wormhole,” says Cobalt Carnes’ Kate Beteul. “It marks your arrival to the sonic environment of the album. The album is really about living in a surreal dream, where reality and logic are suspended. That comfortable, warm place in your mind, where anything is possible.” - MTV HIVE

"Cobalt Cranes Step Out of the Garage"

LA WEEKLY'S Westcoast Sound feature interview

When Cobalt Cranes caught our ear in 2010 with their In Media Rez EP, they'd conjured an appealingly dirty melange of the Stooges and the Vaselines. Now, after the release of their debut full-length LP, Head in the Clouds, they've stepped out of the garage and into a world of pop that's as sweeping and sprawling as L.A. itself. Around noon on an oppressively hot spring day, we met with the founding members at Cafe 101, ahead of their May residency at Lot 1 stating tomorrow. We discussed their evolving sound beside the hum of the freeway.
"I think our EP was very punk, because as musicians, that's where we were," says Kate Betuel, 27. Her blond bangs hang just above her eyes, and her long-sleeved, lace-lapeled black dress stands in opposition to the spring heat outside. Co-founder Tim Foley wears a T-shirt and a "Thrasher" cap of indeterminate vintage; he's got four-days or so of stubble on his face.
Betuel met Foley, 28, a little over four years ago at a house party in Inglewood, where he lived with nine other guys while he was finishing school at LMU (Betuel was making art at Otis). They bonded over mutual affection for home recording equipment, and after graduation they'd meet at Foley's Koreatown apartment to jam on Ramones songs and record demos. They made a ton of noise, but no one ever complained -- apparently the other residents preferred the racket to a visit from the cops. Betuel recalls many times she'd arrive at Foley's door and he'd be playing drums so loudly he wouldn't hear her knocking. The chaotic nature of the place informed their initial sound.

"All our songs start with a riff and you build from there," says Foley. "But this time we were really conscious to make all the songs really full songs, whereas in the past we'd maybe just stop at a minute forty-five, and just say 'OK, that's song.' This time tried to expand on the little riffs as much as we could."

Head in the Clouds sees a more mature duo operating with an acute awareness of what goes into a great pop song. There's still an abundance of shoegazey distortion and surf-rock-inspired riffs, but as Foley says, but it's more measured than their previous work. And lyrically, there are more than a few nods to L.A. -- both as they've experienced it and in terms of its portrayal in pop culture -- as stereotype or archetype, depending on your perspective.

On "Shake," Foley navigates a space between bliss and boredom, exclaiming that he "wants to feel something real," and pleading for someone (or something) to "shake me up." In "Salvation," Betuel sounds oddly even-keel when she laments: "can't save myself, from myself." And on closing number "Paper Moon," they slow things down and let the feedback ride with a stirring track that evokes the emotive twang of Cowboy Junkies.

Both members share an appreciation for L.A. music history. Betuel, for instance, fantasizes about excavating the original Masque basement, where everyone the GoGos to X played in the late 1970s. And she mentions feeling a particular pang of sadness whenever she passes the former site of Gold Star Studios, where Richie Valens, Phil Spector, Brian Wilson, Leonard Cohen, and countless others recorded. "It's sad now because it's like a water store," she says. "You drive by and it's like, right there, so many records were made, and now it's just like strip mall."

With Head in the Clouds, Cobalt Cranes make their contribution to the evolving geography of L.A. music. And fresh off a 10-state tour, they're about to take up a residency at Echo Park venue Lot 1. They'll play every Wednesday in May starting tomorrow. Listeners can expect to hear new material from Head in the Clouds, plus maybe a few Angeleno-themed covers, among them "Mötorhead," written by Lemmy Kilmister just before he formed gus iconic band. But they might also play some Graham Parsons, whom Foley cites as an artist he often looks to for inspiration.

"He's a great songwriter who writes about really big topics," says Foley. "There's a lot of spirituality in his songs, but it's not cheesy; there's a coolness to it. He captures that early L.A. sound, but before it got too mainstream -- like, the Eagles wouldn't exist without him. They cribbed all his stuff."

"Track Premiere: Cobalt Cranes"

Los Angeles’s Tim Foley and Kate Betuel, also known as Cobalt Cranes, are California through and through, from their washed-out, surf-rock undertones to their utterly unperturbed lyrical tone. Coming after an EP and cassette and 7-inch singles, Head In The Clouds, the band’s debut full-length, will be out this year, and we expect it to be flush with the layered style of distorted fuzz-rock that is not unlike that of Jesus And Mary Chain or, more recently, the Raveonettes. CMJ has the first listen of the duo’s new single, “Salvation,” below, as well as Foley and Betuel’s take on the post-garage sound of L.A.
How did the two of you come together to form Cobalt Cranes?
Tim: I had just come back from a trip to New York where I was recording some music. I had some guitars and other instruments at my apartment, and one day I left a bass at Kate’s house. We started writing and recording lo-fi songs in my apartment. We were lucky that the neighbors didn’t mind!
Kate: We met at a party and talked about music and recording all night. Soon after we began to jam together. Tim lived in an apartment in a seedy part of town. His neighbors were not the types who would call the cops. They wouldn’t want them sniffing around. So there were never any noise complaints. He had a guitar amp and full drum kit set up in his little studio apartment. We were so loud! We’d play for hours and began writing songs.

What inspired you to move away from the scuzzy rock ’n’ roll of your EP, In Media Rez, to a cleaner, more expansive pop sound?
Kate: If you stay in the garage long enough you’ll die from the fumes. We were gasping for air. We were ready to get out of the garage, so to speak. In Media Rez laid a lot of groundwork for our sound. I can hear us searching for our identity. Head In The Clouds is the middle ground, the sound we were looking for.
Tim: Our goal was to make a record that we really wanted to listen to. We wanted the songs to have a magical quality that transported the listener to a surreal world. We kept some elements of our garage sound, like crunchy guitars, catchy bass lines and big drums, but wanted to push the limits of what we could do with songwriting and recording.

Your body of work carries elements of garage rock, shoegaze and alternative rock, among others. How do you strike the balance between influence and maintaining originality?
Tim: We wanted to make a record that has elements of everything we love. We experimented with different shades and layers of sound, and drew from nostalgic as well as contemporary influences. The recording process has a lot to do with this blend: We used a combination of vintage and modern techniques to give the record elements of different eras and inspirations. We also do a lot of home recording, so all of the songs blend studio methods and homemade sounds. And when it comes to songwriting, we just try to write songs that we love, without thinking as much about influences or references.
Kate: Our favorite bands always brought something new to the table. It’s easy to be influenced and sound like your favorite band, but where’s the art in that? Our most beloved musicians and bands act as an inspiration to us, not necessarily an influence. I think that’s what makes our sound original. We know we’re done with a song once it sounds like nothing we’ve heard before. There are familiar elements, but you can’t pinpoint it. That grey area is where we like to be and can be the most creative.

On “Devils All Around,” Tim sings about “this made up town.” How would you describe your relationship to L.A. and the role it plays in your music?
Tim: On “Devils All Around” and on this whole album, we did our take on the “L.A. sound.” There are so many inspirations here, but at the same time it’s all made up, it’s make-believe. There’s all of the good and all of the evil in one dazzling, neon-desert oasis.

What’s up next for you two once the album drops?
Kate: We’re going on a spring and summer tour. We have some more videos coming out too. We want to begin recording our follow-up album by the end of the year. It’s already written. I’d like to befriend Jimmy Page and open for Led Zeppelin. We still got nine months left of 2013—let’s make this shit count.
Tim: We have our album release show on April 9 here in L.A., then we’re coming to a town near you! Well, if you happen to live in a town that’s on our tour route. Then we have a May residency back in L.A., and after that we’ll start recording some of the songs that are burning a hole in our hard drive.

Tour Dates For Cobalt Cranes:
04/09 – Los Angeles, CA – Lot 1 Cafe
04/15 – San Francisco, CA – Elbo Room
04/17 – Portland, OR – The Tube
04/18 – Portland, OR – Kenton Club
04/21 – Seattle, WA – Comet Tavern
04/22 – Boise, ID – The Shredder
04/23 – Salt Lake City,UT – Deluxe Bar
04/24 – Denver,CO – Merchant Mile High Saloon
04/25 – Lawrence, KS – Eighth St. Taproom
04/26 – Tulsa, OK – Sound Pony
04/28 – Austin, TX - CMJ

"Coming Up: Cobalt Cranes"

Mixing 1960s-era garage rock with droning shoegaze production, Los Angeles quartet Cobalt Cranes will perform at The Griffin on Feb. 20, 9 p.m. Having built a buzz over the last two years, the band appears just prior to the April release of its debut album, “Head in the Clouds.” Cobalt Cranes features both female and male vocals, giving its music a melodic edge to match its sonic onslaught. This is a band that could make it, at least on the strength of songs like the pounding rocker, “Take You.” Cobalt Cranes are caught on the cusp of becoming the next big thing.

- San Diego News

"Cobalt Cranes "Head In The Clouds""

A woolly, all-too-familiar bassline is the backbone of Head in the Clouds, instantly providing the image of an unkempt vigilante with a thirst for justice. There's a sense of mystery, the song marking its territory with each lingering chord. And then the soft, fairly indistinguishable vocals of Tim Foley and Kate Betuel come into view from afar, coating the grainy surface with a sparkling glare. Cobalt Cranes create an expansiveness without actually dwelling upon it, and opts to charge headfirst into battle instead of endlessly building into a rising action. This is the first taste off their debut LP of the same name, which drops on April 9th via Anticc Records. - The Deli-National

"Ears Wide Open: Cobalt Cranes"

Hard rock and ’90s shoegaze have a new baby, and its name is Cobalt Cranes. The duo, whose members consist of Tim Foley and Kate Betuel, just unveiled “Head in the Clouds.” The title track of their forthcoming debut (slated for an April 9 release via Anticc Records) is a fierce grunge slice of garage-punk, which immediately makes me sorry I missed out on their 2010 EP, “In Media Rez.” Cobalt Cranes offer those vintage psychedelic bass lines and slightly-distant vocals, which have helped the Raveonettes and countless others on their way up. But who has the time to compare? My earbuds are smitten with the fuzzed-out tune. - BUZZBANDS LA

"MP3: At 3 Cobalt Cranes"

West Coast psychedelic duo Tim Foley and Kate Betuel make up Cobalt Cranes. Their debut LP, Head In The Clouds, is set to be released April 9 via their own label Anticc label. Download the LP’s title track below. - Magnet Magazine

"Interview: We talk to EP club (vol 1) band Cobalt Cranes"

Straight from the streets of LA, Cobalt Cranes suck in their surroundings ofsun, sand and silicone and bash it impeccably together with loud, garage psychedelica. Sleazy, brash and full of good old-fashioned rock n’ roll they
ooze badness. They also feature on our fantastic EP with a brilliant record so it only seemed right that we should get to know them a little better.

Hello Cobalt Cranes can you please introduce yourselves?
Kate: Kate clover Betuel, bass player, singer, Taurus from Los angeles
Tim: Tim Foley. I play guitar and sing.

What artist/band do you think we should have on Leg Guitar V Tuckshop EP 2?

Kate: the vignettes. An all girl band from Memphis and the Tooks. All male band from Los Angeles.
Tim: The strange boys. Or Grand Elegance.

What was the last album you listened to?
Kate: “Bored ” by Destroy all Monsters
Tim: I like to listen to the radio here in LA a lot. The other day they were doing “album cuts” and they played the Aerosmith cover of “come together” by the Beatles. I turned it up.

What is your all time favourite album artwork?
Kate: Off the top of my head I would say go go’s vacation. Not my favorite of all time but what came to mind.
Tim: I really like the “Paul’s Boutique” artwork by the Beastie Boys. It’s cool how you can open up the LP and see this full panorama of New York.

what was the funniest/strangest thing you have ever seen at one of your gigs?
Kate: Strangest thing: there was a man fan who painted a picture for me. there was a noose involved, he gave it to me before we played and I was weirded out the rest of the night.
Funniest thing: on tour in Oregon we were chased by a guy wearing a kilt who had a long braided goatee (strangest male facial hair trend of all time). He chased us out of a venue all the way to our van, absolutely unprovoked.

Tim: one of the funny stories I remember actually happened before our show in Memphis. We had just gotten into town on our recent tour, and we got into a cab down to Beale Street to check out the city. We started careening through traffic heading downtown. As we swerve off the highway our driver yells out ” there’s the world famous Sun Records”, and we drive by the place so fast that we cant even see what he is talking about. Vrooom, and we’re past it, swerving around cars on a fast freeway offramp. Our show was awesome though, and Memphis is a great town.

what is your favourite 90’s r&b record?
Kate: Don’t have one.
Tim: I’m not sure how R&B it is, but I’m a big fan of the 90's Bad Boy era with Biggie, P. Diddy and Mase. Also Mary j Blidge had this great song “How ever do you want it”, and all of her stuff on Jay Z’s first record was awesome (which is also probably not officially an “R&B” record, but also a very awesome record).

I’ve been told that one of the torture techniques of the us military is to chain one to the floor and play really loud repetitive music until one confesses. If you were kidnapped for withholding important information what record would bring you close to surrendering?

Kate: The cranberries would make me confess, I can’t stand them.
Tim: The rip-off songs in commercials that sound exactly like real songs that I like, but the notes are played in a slightly different order or something.

What do you think this years must have accessory is for every young band?

Kate: Good songs.
Tim: Reverb boxes from the 80's.

Please complete this sentence ‘Leg guitar V Tuckshop’ makes us feel like….’
Kate: Eating melting cotton candy ice cream on a pogo stick
Tim: we cant wait for people to be able to get the EP!

You can download the excellent ‘Head in the Clouds by Cobalt Cranes below; - Tuckshop community radio (UK)

"Head in the Clouds by Cobalt Cranes"

A menacing and characteristically LA slice of grungy-shoegaze from Cobalt Cranes, taken from the first in a series of free digital EPs from the LEG GUITAR v TUCKSHOP: EP CLUB; the handy work of our Deputy Music Editor Tom Jenkins and Tuckshop Community Radio’s Jack Bacon. Vol. 1 also features Lilies On Mars, TAL!, Burning Buildings and Joe Innes. Download it for free here. - Snipe (London)

"Cobalt Cranes Self titled 7" review"

Female but sometimes male vocals with a chunky, punkish rhythm guitar in my left ear, a fuzzy lead guitar doing Nuggetsy things in my right ear, a pleasantly farty bass in the middle of my head, and an oft-cymbal-less ((but occasionally tambourine-ful)) drumbeat making me feel that i, or someone, should be shimmying a bit to “Freak Out,” although they probably ended the thing a minute too early for my rump’s tastes. And, now that the taste of my rump has somehow come into play, i think i’ll move on, lest i start trying to draw inane parallels between “Take You” and the fourth Psychedelic Furs album. BEST SONG: “Freak Out.” BEST SONG TITLE: “Freak Out.” Apparently Frank Zappa knew what he was doing, which is surprising. FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: French people make their numerals weirdly. Female but sometimes male vocals with a chunky, punkish rhythm guitar in my left ear, a fuzzy lead guitar doing Nuggetsy things in my right ear, a pleasantly farty bass in the middle of my head, and an oft-cymbal-less ((but occasionally tambourine-ful)) drumbeat making me feel that i, or someone, should be shimmying a bit to “Freak Out,” although they probably ended the thing a minute too early for my rump’s tastes. And, now that the taste of my rump has somehow come into play, i think i’ll move on, lest i start trying to draw inane parallels between “Take You” and the fourth Psychedelic Furs album. BEST SONG: “Freak Out.” BEST SONG TITLE: “Freak Out.” Apparently Frank Zappa knew what he was doing, which is surprising. FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: French people make their numerals weirdly. (Frantic City)
–Rev. Norb
Razorcake - RAZORCAKE

"Cobalt Cranes "Freak out" 7" Review"

MAXIMIM ROCKNROLL- Review of Self titled 7" (Frantic)
December 2010- Issue #33
A dirty slap of garage punk, the production fuzzed but not totally blown out (close though). Taking in the basic, primitive thud of all those obscure one-hit wonders on the Teenage Shutdown series, and adding a Stooges/Velvet Underground sonic wail. Side B grooves right in to a garage shoegazer vibe, without the art school trappings, or Spacemen 3 minus the downers. Me like. - MAXIMUM ROCKNROLL

"Cobalt Cranes lean towards noise, but carry a more frank inheritance of American rock"

EP review from Abus Dangereux
Here is a review of our Ep "In Media Rez" from the French Fanzine Abus Dangereux. (The review was originally written in French and was translated to English)

"...Cobalt Cranes lean towards noise, but carry a more frank inheritance of American rock played in dirty clubs. Sounding like a band that skims from the flea-ridden sonic shores of Tacoma Washington in the early 60's to the disposable electricity of the early 1990's foolishly combined under the name "Grunge".
From the very garage-sounding "Messy" with its Chuck Berry riffs, to the Sonic Youth-esque "Picture in the Snow", into the psychedelic excess of "Freak Out", Cobalt Cranes create a panorama of fifty year's worth of music during the 10 minutes of In Media Rez. That's very rock 'n' roll."


"Paintings of Los Angeles with distortion"

"...paintings of Los Angeles with distortion, images that speak of sex and drugs in a crummy bar....
...they connect the guitar to the radio and make rock and roll..." - EXTRAVAGANZA! (Chile)

"NEW: Band of the Week"

NEW BAND OF THE WEEK! Insound staffers seek out new music constantly. Between the hundreds of music submissions we get per week and the new bands and labels we're always reaching out to, we stumble upon some really great stuff. Each week, we will be picking one lesser-known band that we particularly love. This week, Jory get wasted on the post-punk nostalgia of Cobalt Cranes.

What is immediately evident about In Media Rez is the harmonization of the L.A. quartet's nostalgic post-punk garage rock attitude with a forward-thinking sense of stylized and soulful execution that never once over the span of the four tracks caves in to overly pretentious art excess. And if you're a sucker for dynamic boy/girl vocals like me, you'll love Tim Foley whose affected sneers have a slightly Cobain-esque drawl and Kat Betuel who holds and howls her notes like a young Exene Cervenka on a good night. The end result is an EP that boasts and squalls with an energy that is classic cool and is the perfect antidote for all those nights you spent pensively listening to quiet indie-rock in a vain attempt to reconnect with your sensitive side. "Freak Out" will put you front and center at your favorite dive. "Take You" will reintroduce whiskey to your coke. "Messy" is the brawl you'll get into in the parking lot. And you'll wake up the next morning with "A Picture in the Snow." Yes, I've got a strangely good feeling about Cobalt Cranes. Just wait until it happens to you.


"Cobalt Cranes: "What is the deal with the gas stations here""

As they cruised into Oregon on their first West Coast tour, Cobalt Cranes immediately Twittered, "What is the deal with the gas stations here?" Let's forgive the band's pompousness at the pump in order to enjoy their musical offerings. A foursome with a distinctly Los Angeles-tinged take on the fuzzy garage rock so prevalent these days, Cobalt Cranes' tracks sound slick despite stylized distortion and clashing cymbals. The Sonic Youth-esque male/female vocal split between drawling Tim Foley and honeyed Kate Betuel anchors their songs among the crunchy guitar of Mateo Leonardo and steady drumming from Danny Rossi. With recordings limited to tape compilations and a 7-inch released by French label Frantic City, Cobalt Cranes plan to self-release their upcoming EP in the Portland DIY style. That's how we do it up here. Just not when it comes to gas. "


"Cobalt Cranes "fuzzy L.A. post-punk""

“In Media Rez”
(Anticc) ???1/2
— We’re all busy, right?
But who doesn’t have
10 minutes to spare
in exchange for being
doused with noisy,
fuzzy L.A. post-punk that’ll probably leave
you wondering why the serving’s so small?
You’ll get that from Cobalt Cranes and
their four-track EP “In Media Rez” that
might leave you feeling a little dirty but
won’t exactly have you sprinting for the
Kate Betuel and Tim Foley trade vocal
duties, though never does this sound
like one of those guy-girl clichés, as they
pound on the lo-fi rock that’s somewhere
in between the Dum Dum Girls and
“Freak Out” kicks off with a stoner
vibe that bleeds right into “Take You,” a
gazey little thing that’s simple and catchy.
“Picture in the Snow” offers a rousing end
to this quickie, as Foley twangs his plea,
“Put your arms around me,” assuring most
listeners will do just that.
I can’t wait to hear the full-length. (BK)


"Through multiple influences, Cobalt Cranes capture Los Angeles"

If you would indulge me for a moment, I’ve hit upon a semi-coherent (but mostly gross) metaphor for Cobalt Cranes. Have you ever pissed on a campfire? In seconds the flame is reduced to smoldering coals and the air is thick with smoke that smells of ammonia. Cobalt Cranes sound like hissing ammonia smoke. They sound like L.A. In a good way.

Let me start over.

Cobalt Cranes, based out of L.A., is a quintessentially Californian band that trades in buzzing bursts of tightly wound art-rock. Co-founded by Kate Betuel and Tim Foley, the two shuffled through a couple lineups before finally finding their band. The hissing ammonia smoke I (perhaps misguidedly) alluded to earlier is mainly the result of the band’s recording technique, which was born out of necessity.

“We only had one microphone, and we weren’t really concerned about placement,” says Betuel. “So, kind of without knowing we just created our sound.”

Their songs conjure up images of L.A. punks in bold shades blasting noise in dirty clubs. And so it seems to be. The boy/girl dynamics of Cobalt Cranes soften the edges of songs that threaten to be too cold. And just when you think you’ve got the band down pat, a song like the gently bombastic “Messy” comes along, with its guitar lick that’s surprisingly reminiscent of Chuck Berry. Cobalt Cranes is not afraid of tweaking and stretching its sound, and completely upfront when copping to influences.
“Our influences change a lot,” says Betuel, before she and Foley proceed to list off any and all bands that have affected them in the past and may again someday.

“The Vaselines, Redd Kross, the Wipers, Chuck Berry, Nirvana…” they say of what was influencing them at the time they recorded their upcoming EP, In Media Rez.
It’s all of a part, this L.A. thing.

"PREMIERE: Cobalt Cranes, "Picture in the Snow""

Truth: Two nights ago we drank three glasses of wine and played Dinosaur Jr’s “In a Jar” like six times in a row (singing along, obviously). Based on this song’s boozy dirge-iness, we have a feeling Cobalt Cranes has either done something similar, or at least would be down if we BBM’d them to come over and hang out with us while doing just that. Sure, we’d make them leave by 11:30 (we have to work in the morning), but we’d secretly play “Picture in the Snow” over and over after they left, reveling in its distorted fuzz heartbeat and picturing ourselves sauntering around the streets of LA, mean mugging. Sometimes the best music makes you nostalgic for things you’ve never done.

"Cobalt Cranes at The Smell"

Hands down, the Smell is a great venue. Sure, it’s in an alley and from time to time rats enter and scurry across the floor to check the place out—nonetheless, from the locale, art, staff, and bands, the venue has great taste........
.....As usual with Cobalt Cranes, their set was solid. In fact, some songs featured impressive breaks and time changes—proving the band was so tight, it could turn on a dime. Mid-set, in a moment of whimsy, Tim switched his guitar and bassist Kate took off her shoes. I guess she hadn’t seen the vermin in the room earlier. The sound was almost hypnotic as Kate and Tim harmonized their vocals while lead guitarist Mateo played licks that mimicked their vocals in a melodic and, at times, call and response way. The band plowed through their music flawlessly like a snow shovel in a Los Angeles August.... - LA RECORD

"Cobalt Cranes "In Media Rez""

Of the new local bands that dare tread music’s slippery, precipitous slopes, Cobalt Cranes are one of the few fit to be Sherpas for the rock ’n’ roll world. The front cover of their new EP, In Media Rez, features artwork of a car emitting epic psychedelic exhaust and this trip starts mid-ride - not with a ragtag group of beginners, but with a mature band that has developed its talents after years of playing to L.A’s cellar dwellars. First track, “Freak Out,” starts off living up to its name - the perfect introduction. “Take You” begins with a tinge of ambient noise before launching into a minor-key adventure with bright, polished harmonies. “Messy” is a two-minute bundle of fun full of distortion and Chuck Berry riffs that becomes a full-scale war on the senses. And finally, “Picture in the Snow” is both the descent into Hell and the deus ex machina that resolves this tale. With Donovan (drums) and Kate (Bass) supplying solid pulsing grooves and Tim and Mateo splattering colorful guitar tone everywhere, Cobalt Cranes earn themselves a place in the local garage pantheon. Listen. Love.
- L.A Record


"Cobalt Cranes "In Media Rez""

Of the new local bands that dare tread music’s slippery, precipitous slopes, Cobalt Cranes are one of the few fit to be Sherpas for the rock ’n’ roll world. The front cover of their new EP, In Media Rez, features artwork of a car emitting epic psychedelic exhaust and this trip starts mid-ride - not with a ragtag group of beginners, but with a mature band that has developed its talents after years of playing to L.A’s cellar dwellars. First track, “Freak Out,” starts off living up to its name - the perfect introduction. “Take You” begins with a tinge of ambient noise before launching into a minor-key adventure with bright, polished harmonies. “Messy” is a two-minute bundle of fun full of distortion and Chuck Berry riffs that becomes a full-scale war on the senses. And finally, “Picture in the Snow” is both the descent into Hell and the deus ex machina that resolves this tale. With Donovan (drums) and Kate (Bass) supplying solid pulsing grooves and Tim and Mateo splattering colorful guitar tone everywhere, Cobalt Cranes earn themselves a place in the local garage pantheon. Listen. Love.
- L.A Record


"MP3 Exclusive: 'Take you' From LA Garage Rockers Cobalt Cranes"

West Coast Sound knows what you're thinking, and it goes something like this: "For Troggs' sake, there are more garage-rock bands in this city than there are garages! Do these Stooges really think we need another?" Yes, we do -- call us Iggynoramuses, but we think this MP3 from local trio Cobalt Cranes deserves some love.
Following a gust of fuzzy etherea, "Take You" affects a melancholy grind that improves upon the Raveonettes' sound even as it hearkens back to something a bit more classic (the Vaselines, perhaps?).
The tune comes from Cobalt Cranes' pending May 4 EP, In Media Rez -- to be released on the band's own Anticc Records -- the cover of which can be seen above. A full-length is currently in the works, as is a limited 7-inch for France's Frantic City Records.


Head in The clouds- Cassette Tape 2013
Dallas Distortion Music

Head in The clouds- LP 2013
Anticc Records

Tuck shop v. Leg Guitar EP Volume 1: 2011
Featuring: Head in the Clouds

Some are Blonde- Single-2011
Anticc Records

Self Titled- 7" vinyl Single-2010
Frantic City

In Media Rez- EP-2010
on Anticc Records

Zap! Cassettes sampler-2009
on Zap! Cassettes

Cobalt Cranes have performed live on college radio stations such as KXLU Los Angeles and KSPC Claremont. Their debut album, 'Head In The Clouds' is currently climbing the college radio charts, headed for the CMJ top 200 after landing in the top 10 at several stations throughout the country.



Two years since the release of their EP 'In Media Rez’ began turning heads at LA Record, LA Weekly, The Fader and more, LA-based rockers Cobalt Cranes released their debut full-length, ‘Head In The Clouds’, last spring via Dallas Distortion Music. The album was well - received by Buzzbands LA, MTV Hive, and more.
Led by Tim Foley and Kate Betuel, Cobalt Cranes blend elements of desert, psychedelic and shoegaze sounds, taking a modern approach to classic California rock. ‘Head In The Clouds’ is heavily influenced by hard rock album narratives of the early 1970s and versatile shoegaze rock of the early 90s, as well as modern sounds. They also explored and expanded upon what is considered the "California sound".
Hailing from Los Angeles, Cobalt Cranes began when Tim and Kate bonded over 60's garage punk, 90's shoegaze and psych rock. The Duo began making demos in Tim's apartment, and recorded an EP titled In Media Rez. The resulting sound was a dynamic mix of primitive, raw garage rock and lush slow burners. They soon assembled a live band, began playing locally and embarked on several Southwest and Pacific Northwest tours. They released singles on Atlanta based Zap! cassettes and London label Tuck Shop v. Guitar, as well as a 7" with French label Frantic City.
This past spring Cobalt Cranes set out on a tour of the U.S. During a sound check on tour the band caught the ear of the owner of Dallas Distortion Music (DDM), who happened to be hanging out in front of the venue. The label released 'Head In The Clouds', and the band set off on another national U.S tour. Cobalt Cranes was a featured artist at this year's CMJ music festival, and their recent album is currently climbing the college radio charts, already going top 10 at several college stations around the country.