“You’ll Be Bright (Invocation P. 1)” – Cloud Cult
A big bursting semi-ecstatic valentine to human potential, “You’ll Be Bright” tingles and churns and sparkles with earnest, offbeat energy as only this environmentally focused, biodiesel van-touring Midwestern ensemble can dish out.
We begin with front man/mastermind Craig Minowa singing ardently over an appealingly psychedelic accompaniment—on top of a simple acoustic guitar pattern there’s some kind of phasing or looping going on, but it sounds unusually precise, as if the bending of the notes is itself a sculpted part of the music. The introduction is an extended one, with lyrics that are idiosyncratic listings of categories and things, interspersed with the exhortation to “travel safely.” There’s a feeling of ritual and mystery in the air, as befitting a song parenthetically labeled an “invocation.”
Drums sneak in around the minute mark—I dare you to figure out exactly when—and the song breaks open at 1:12, with driving guitars and percussion and a new melody and chord progression. “I found stars on the tip of your tongue,” Minowa sings, and it’s all carefully constructed exuberance and uplift and mystery from there on in. The song unspools like a journey, with an expansive, circular feeling to it, and sure enough, by the end we have found ourselves back to the beginning, as the opening lyrics reprise amid all the shimmering clatter the band can muster.
Cloud Cult was previously featured on Fingertips in March 2008, and it’s worth going back to read that earlier review for some interesting background information on this most unusual, Minneapolis-based band. “You’ll Be Bright” can be found on the album Light Chasers, released digitally earlier this summer and due out on CD in September on the band’s own Earthology label; it’s their eighth full-length studio album in their 15-year career.
MP3 via Utne Reader‘s August Music Sampler.
NOTE: I did not realize, when featuring this, that Utne Reader only keeps its samplers online for the month in question. As a result, this song, unfortunately, is no longer available. For future reference, I will not feature Utne’s selections (although they’re good!), because I’d ideally like songs on Fingertips to be available for more than a few weeks.