What do you get when you cross a ukulele with pop-punk that packs a punch? It’s The Sonder Bombs – the Midwestern quartet with a penchant for homegrown, high-octane composition. Following on from their fantastic debut, The Sonder Bombs return with their newest record Clothbound, which weaves a narrative of loss, vulnerability, and growth.
With any sophomore record, there’s always an added hint of maturity. The Sonder Bombs invite us along on an intimate journey into the heart of what makes the band tick. From modest indie opener ‘Papillon’ (which gives me Brand New Eyes era Paramore vibes), to the dry-witted exploration of toxic friendships on ‘What Are Friends For?’, The Sonder Bombs leave no stone unturned. The highlight of the album for me is ‘The One About You’ – it’s a stylistically unique love song that adds an extra layer of depth in its short but sweet runtime.
To mark the release of the record, we caught up with the band on all things Clothbound, being inspired by nature, and Joni Mitchell.
Hey Sonder Bombs, how’s it going?
It’s going, just trying to survive! Very excited to be releasing music cuz it’s distracting us from the doom of the world crumbling around us haha
What can you tell us about your latest record Clothbound? How does it shape up compared to your previous work?
I think it’s more grown-up, so to speak. I think we’re getting closer to figuring out our sound as a band and this record feels very honest and more personal than MFR in that respect.
With Clothbound being produced in quarantine, do you think your artistic process was different as a result?
Recording wasn’t that different because we had already finished writing before the pandemic hit and when we entered the studio it was towards the beginning of quarantine. It was kinda nice though to be isolated in the studio! Holed up with nothing but our instruments and each other was totally magical and I can’t wait to do it again. That being said, it’s definitely heartbreaking to not have a sweet full US tour or something to celebrate the album with but ce la vie
What song are you most proud of?
Probably ‘Scattered’. I wrote that one for my family about the passing of my grandpa “Pup”. I’m most proud of that one because writing it helped me process a lot of my feelings surrounding his death in a healthy way. I hope it can help other people through loss as well.
Your style is very distinct but memorable – where do you draw inspiration from?
Our friends! Nature! My Cats! Everything inspires us. I think we try as hard as we can to keep elements within our songs true to the subject matter we’re writing about. Staying with the feelings that inspire us throughout the songwriting process is essential.
If you could collaborate with any artist (dead or alive), who would it be and why?
Joni Mitchell. Both lyrically and vocally she absolutely mesmerizes me. I’d do anything to learn from such an iconic writer.
Finally, if you could close out the interview with one final thought, what would it be?
Vulnerability is badass! Crying IS cool! Start a band!!!!
If only I could start a band half as awesome as The Sonder Bombs. A girl can dream! Listen to Clothbound here: