The triumvirate known as cLOUDDEAD has long since left the staggering yellow farmlands of the Midwest for bright sunshiny Bay Area blue skies. But how would this affect their sophomore and possibly final album, Ten? The group, for the time being, is defunct – so what will come next? And where do they get that wonderful noise? All this and more coming to a cLOUDDEAD interview near you…
Blake: Why has the group broken up? Odd Nosdam left halfway through production of the album, why did he decide to come back? How did it affect the environment and direction of songs and putting them together?
Odd Nosdam: We are taking an extended break from each other as friends so that meant we had to stop doing things like cLOUDDEAD. We still get along great as friends, we just don’t hang out at the same mall anymore. And I left before the record began. Four songs were eventually started by Why? and Dose one, which I later added my shit to once I rejoined the band. One of the effects of my leaving was the time it allowed us to develop individually while we procrastinated on working on new cLOUDDEAD material. Getting comfortable in Cali and doing our own records was very important to what Ten became. So once we matured a bit, we sat together in a room and agreed to finish the record and move on with our lives.
What is next for each member musically? And outside of music? Will Dose ever do another album with Boom Bip? Another Reaching Quiet album? What is the word on the Subtle album? Dose is doing a voice for a cartoon character, how did that come about?
Dose one: Subtle is next, dropping on Lex Records in the mid-fall. Singles, videos, stuffed plush dolls, tours in the fall and spring – the works. And in August, Jel and Dax and I are headed to sunny Munich to finish the Notwist/Themselves record. As for the movie, I’m actually the voice for a pair of cartoon eyes that hover just behind the walls of an awake woman’s home and head. I and her dead husband are the leading men and it is a full length feature film with animation animatronics and real live human beings. I begin recording mid summer. It’s called The Zoo Project. Hopefully Brian (Boom Bip) and I will do a record together one someday soon.
Why?: I am working on a new Why? record with the help of my brother Josiah and my friends Matt and Doug. It should come out in about a year.
Odd Nosdam: I’m in the middle of a solo record, which I hope to have done in a few months. Jessica Bailiff just recorded some vocals and stuff for my record. Jel and I are helping Mike Patton “finish” up the tracks for Peeping Tom by adding our production style drums and sequencing. Other than that just eatin’ a lot of vegan cakes.
What has been the most satisfying thing about making music for a living? Any stories to tell about moments you knew you had done the right by moving to Cali to do music?
Dose one: The human beings it has led me to and let me work beside. They are the only gauge I have for telling whether or not I am on the right track . . . fighting the good fight. Story: When I first moved to California. I was walking to the mailbox to drop off some bills and I saw Del tha Funkee Homosapien, Jamalski, and the dude from Tony, Toni, Tone all talking with one another beside a car in the parking lot near my house. I walked up and introduced myself as Dose, and said that I thought Del used to be dope and that Jamalski was pretty much wack and then straight up told Tone to talk to the hand. One thing led to another and I had all three of these fools yoked up and on the ground begging for mercy. I took their starter caps and Ipods and then broke south to max at the pad and fuck with some library books I’ve been meaning to fuck with.
The new album has a few motifs like animals and death; are there any reasons behind this?
Why?: These are just themes that sort of fell into place as we were writing the poems for the album. I guess we were just drawn to these subjects. We collect animal death masks and whatnot. Maybe that has something to do with it.
Did you write any of the album while traveling? I sometimes get that traveling feeling when I listen to it.
Dose one: Let’s see . . . yes. “Dead Dogs Two” while on the subway speeding beneath mighty Oakland. “Rifle Eyes” in a mini van on the Hood/cLOUDDEAD tour. The first line on “Son of A Gun” waiting in line at an airport in Minneapolis, MN behind a father son hunting team. “The Velvet Ant” in la la land during the Pyramidi video shoot and that’s that.
What influences your music the most? Are you more influenced by hip hop or something else?
Odd Nosdam: I don’t know. Hip hop is what influenced me to start making music; it was the music of my youth. I’m influenced by everything: life experiences, friends, family, depression, anger. I value all types of music, art, film and food.
Is there any song by cLOUDDEAD or off of other independent projects that you regret releasing and why?
Dose one: Yeah, the mash up that Nosdam and I did with “Inherited Scars” the Sage Francis song and that song with the hard-ass drums off the new Sting record. Not only was it a bit forced, but a lot of Sage’s styling ended up offbeat in the end cause pro-tools was all new to us at the time and shit. But, you know, time is money. Otherwise, conscience is clean and the Anticon section is overflowing.
How did you know it was time to pick up and leave Ohio?
Odd Nosdam: It only now feels like it was time for me to pick up and leave . . . it was all such a blur. I wasn’t ready in a lot of ways and have learned some valuable-ass lessons so far, but I just follow my instinct and the Bay felt right then as it still does for the most part. Thanks.