Cloud Boat Part One

A periphery band in every sense of the word: Cloud Boat are located just inside London’s M25 boundary where they have been cutting their own musical path since 2011. With their debut album now a fortnight from release, we caught up with the pair to discover how their sound has evolved since their first slice of R&S woozy electronica two years ago.

Anita Awbi
  • By Anita Awbi
  • 10 May 2013
  • min read
They are seemingly devoid of the pressures of the capital’s hipster scene and, over time, their sound has noticeably edged further from the grounded electronica of their first release.

As soon as the pair posted their first track Lions on the Beach onto the internet two years ago they were snapped up by R&S Records. Since then Sam Rickett and Tom Clarke have thrown themselves into their live act, undeterred by their lack of recorded material.

It is through their live sets - and well received tours with Mount Kimbie and with label mate James Blake - that they have evolved their approach and built up a stash of new songs. Now, on tracks such as Dréan, Sam’s hypnotic guitar is allowed to glide at a gentle pace while Tom’s vocals harness a powerful tidal pull.

Their debut album Book of Hours is released through the R&S imprint Apollo Records on 28 May, while lead single Youthern has already garnered rave reviews from the music press and international blogs. We thought it was high time we caught up with them to check out the new tracks.

Below you will hear a stripped-back version of Dréan, which they played live on the Thames beach by St Gabriel’s Wharf on London’s Southbank. The performance is engulfed by the noise of the lapping tide, passers by and the thrum of the city, all adding another dimension to the recording…