When his primary music project, LVL UP, stopped working together in 2018, prolific
multi-instrumentalist and illustrator Nick Corbo began working on a new body of music and visual art as Spirit Was. On his debut studio album Heaven’s Just a Cloud, haunting, beautiful scenes of the natural world feel just as represented in the warm, classic, wooden floors of country rock as they do in the dark, droning, shadows of doom and black metal.
With new creative liberties, Corbo is allowed an opportunity to keep exploring the heavy, distorted instrumentation and experimental techniques that have shaped his music to date. His ability to focus on small details and weave them into vast networks has been evident in all of the music and visual art in his catalogue. In its density, Heaven’s Just A Cloud is threaded with memorable lyrics and recapitulating musical themes that guide the listener. Spirit Was feels at home among the technical, melodic songwriting of Harry Nilsson’s studio recordings, or the dusty, psychedelic oblivion of Earth and Wolves in the Throne Room. A departure from his previously collaborative recordings, the album features Corbo on drums, bass, guitar, and keyboards, weaving sweet, intentional melodies and vocal harmonies over a slamming, distorted rhythm section.
Outside of Spirit Was, Corbo is a professional producer, musician, and visual artist who, over the past 10 years, has produced a catalogue of studio albums, an extensive collection of hand-made and individually illustrated distortion pedals, and a large portfolio of intricate visual art, including the pen and ink drawings that adorn this album’s artwork.
Overall Corbo wrote a third of the songs for LVL UP, including the daydreamy “Spirit Was” that would later inspire the name for his next project. With Spirit Was, Corbo continues a tradition of self referencial compositions; fans of his previous work in LVL UP will recognize recurring themes that have appeared throughout the band’s discography. Heaven’s Just a Cloud is out October 22nd, 2021 via Danger Collective Records.