Date: March 23, 2019
Rod - band - Silver Clouds
Photo by Jason Halstead


INTRODUCING : Silver Clouds

Silver Clouds is a Winnipeg musical group consisting of Rod Slaughter (Duotang, Novillero), Dave Berthiume (Novillero), Sean Stevens (Novillero, Transonic) and Steve Payne (Boy, Transonic).

In the years between Novillero’s demise and Duotang’s reformation, Duotang/Novillero songwriter Rod Slaughter kept writing, leaving a small pile of songs that had otherwise no home. Twelve pop-infused tracks of disaffection fleshed out with long time friend Dave Berthiaume (Novillero), ranging in topics from a once famous actor’s internal dilemmas to post-World War 1 border security, with lots of songs about just getting on with it in between.

And now, here is Silver Clouds. A band capturing those 12 songs with the help of friends and Winnipeg musical royalty. The record, produced by celebrated engineer Cam Loeppky, features Rod Slaughter on vocals, bass & keyboards and Dave Berthiaume on drums, along with Rusty Matyas (Imaginary Cities) Rej Ricard (Telepathic Butterflies) and Keri Latimer (Nathan), among others.

And now, with their self-titled debut soon to be released by Winnipeg’s Disintegration Records, the songs are fleshed out live in their current form played by Rod and Dave alongside Novillero band-mate Sean Stevens on guitar and Steve Payne (Boy, Transonic) on bass.

Catchy hip shakers, blistering rock n roll rides and a mess of horns and organs round out a truly special and great indie-pop record.

How did the process begin making your debut album?

Rod Slaughter: It was a very lengthy start and stop process that began evolving when my last project, Novillero, called it a day.

What was your overall artistic vision for this recording?

Rod Slaughter: It actually evolved a fair amount, which is what I find interesting. Originally it was to be fairly minimalistic, but we involved many different friends from the Winnipeg music scene in the recordings, and with each guest, the sound evolved slightly. But the main focus was a rather frantic, 70s UK, pop sound on most songs and more hypnotic feel on others.

If you could highlight one or two songs on the record, what would they be and why?

Rod Slaughter: Likely “Peter Sellers” and “Inclement Weather” — the former for the story of one part of the late actor’s life in the early 1970s, and the latter for it’s droning atmosphere and guest vocal performance by one of my favourite local singers, Keri Latimer.

How would you describe Winnipeg to someone who has never been there?

Rod Slaughter: It’s possibly one of the most isolated large cities on the planet, with extreme temperature swings, incredible Indigenous heritage and culture, and a healthy arts scene. And a lot of bugs.

Can you name a record or concert experience that was life-changing for you?

Rod Slaughter: For a record, it would be a toss up between David Bowie’s Hunky Dory and Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures. For concerts, it was seeing Stereolab in Minneapolis in 1999, and Nick Cave in California in 2013.

You can find more information about Silver Clouds at...