By Michael Cerio
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Peaceful is not often a word used to describe a concert.
Rocking, inspiring, sweaty – one of those usually applies, but peaceful is rare in the world of amplifiers and eight dollar beers.
That was very much the feeling though as Cloud Cult played The Foundry in Philadelphia on Thursday night.
Singer Craig Minowa and his band have nearly perfected an aesthetic of love and mindfulness, and have in turn developed a devoted group of fans. It’s like they were engineered at the Omega Institute to make you feel good and not sweat the small stuff.
Good vibes were palpable in the crowd as the collective of artists known as Cloud Cult radiated from the stage. With eight members tightly packed beneath the lights in the newly opened space within The Fillmore, peace wasn’t the only unusual part of the performance. Beyond the classroom-sized haul of instruments from banjo to mandolin to trombone to xylophone, the most interesting item the Minnesota band brought with them was two canvases. Affixed to the back of the stage, two members of the group painted throughout the show. A bird and a ram went from stark grey to popping with color, slowly evolving throughout the set as the band ran through song after song sparkling with positive affirmation and love.
The live painting on stage is unique, and it works in a surprising way. It’s a visual representation for Minowa and his creative commune of this positivity they emit. Those paintings are also bid on by fans wanting a piece of the experience to take home, to the tune of hundreds of dollars.
With proclamations like “you were born, to make this right” and “there’s so much energy in us,” Cloud Cult warmed a room with steel rafters and worn exposed brick with music and brushstrokes. Everyone appeared to leave happy with a song in their head a little extra zen.