Posts Tagged ‘Bliss Release’

It seemed as though there was something in the Blue Mountains water. And that Cloud Control had sole keep over its supply, judging from the magical wanderlust emanating from their debut Bliss Release. ‘Meditation Song #2’ prepares you for adventure with its soft drone and acoustic guitar which give way to the intertwining of Alister Wright and Heidi Lenffer’s voices, who gently insist, ‘make my head a pool of water now’.

The water theme continues with ‘There’s Nothing in the Water We Can’t Fight.’ Wright was inspired to write the song after a trip to India. “Yeah, I went there over Christmas” in 2010. “I was in a hotel room looking out over this alleyway and there was like a funeral procession. “They’re all just walking down the street, banging their chests and screaming out. It was such a passionate kind of celebration of someone. “I just thought it was really cool. And the lyrics aren’t really literal. Like, I’m not describing something, but I just tried to put that kind of feeling into the performance.”
There’s an eerieness playfully conveyed in ‘Ghost Story’ and a sunny bounce between Jeremy Kelshaw’s bass and Wright’s skipping guitar on ‘This Is What I Said’ and ‘My Fear #2’.

“We were all really young, it was a great time,” Wright says. “We played so many shows around bars and clubs in Sydney, we really put the songs together in venues and playing them live. “Seeing how many people resonated with it is really humbling and is a dream come true.”

The sound of Cloud Control caught the attention of Hollywood filmmakers and ‘Just For Now’ ended up on the saucy soundtrack for Channing Tatum’s Magic Mike in 2012.

Whilst it was an exciting opportunity, the experience left a bitter aftertaste for Wright, with the low fee offered for the use of the song being a trade-off for the potential for “lots of exposure”.
“It was cool to be recognised, and I wanna acknowledge we have had a privileged career, but I think we always had a bit of a shrug reaction to this one,” he says. “Artists should be paid fairly for their work. “I think people see us as a band that really made it, and in the ways that matter we did! But we always made less than minimum wage, you know, always scraping through with just enough for the next album.

“I mean, people will always find a way to express themselves. But that doesn’t mean we should exploit them, right?. “Especially now, COVID-19 is making a lot of people quit or not even start because it seems impossible. “Culture is a way of caring for the future, so this is a big loss. I think it’s like the creative version of ignoring climate change.”

Across the album’s textured songs, it’s evident that there has been a great deal of care invested into crafting Bliss Release as a wholly rewarding adventure. ‘The Rolling Stones’ brings in beautiful dappled light and treads a hypnotic rhythm that seems to turn everything in the periphery into slow motion. And there’s the album’s shining centrepiece ‘Gold Canary’, which features a multitude of layers of incredible sounds.

There’s deep chanted vocals, an inebriated tambourine, handclaps, twisted keyboards, steely guitars, ponderous bass, and Ulrich Lenffer’s fabulously steady drums earthing our senses amid the head spinning joy of it all. Bliss Release is an album that fully delivers on the promise evoked by its title. It’s lush and meditative, with touches of menace and mystery, and ultimately uplifting and deeply blissful.

Perhaps it’s a testament to their childhood bonds, or their secluded upbringing in the open spaces of the Blue Mountains, that Bliss Release feels so wonderfully realised. Especially from a group who’d only started writing songs together a few years before its release. “From writing them in the mountains at the Lenffer family home to touring the world, it was really somethin’,” Wright says of the band’s early days.

“Nowadays it seems like Bliss Release was a road trip album for a lot of people. I still love it and thinking about the fun we had at this time is wonderful.”