by Noel Wurst
I’m glad I researched the history of Cloud Cult before reviewing Feel Good Ghosts. If I had posted a negative review of the CD without understanding the band’s background, learning about them post-review probably would have made me throw up. After the tragic, sudden loss of lead singer Craig Minowa and “on-stage visual artist” Connie Minowa’s two year old son – the couple went through what was obviously the most trying, intensely dark period of their entire lives, and the music of Cloud Cult is largely comprised of the healing and art the two of them used, and continue to use this day to help them deal with their loss.
Before learning so much about the band, I’d formed my own opinions of how Feel Good Ghost left me kinda unimpressed, and how it reminded me of an attempt to sound like an American version of Arcade Fire. The orchestration and sheer volume of a large number of the tracks is at times overwhelming, and initially comes across a tad silly, and even somewhat unnecessary.
But now as I’ve learned what I’ve learned, and being a father of an almost two-year old son myself, I can hardly listen to the album without wanting to cry. There’s songs I don’t care for, but when aren’t there? The ones that I do enjoy make me want to rush home and make music with my own family. This is an album that transcends the need for judgment and critiquing. Anyone able to create something like this after such a tragedy, and then share it with the rest of the world, hardly needs to be told whether it’s good or bad. Feel Good Ghosts is impressive enough based on its conception alone.