Leila Abdul-Rauf - Cold and Cloud

Posted on Friday, January 03, 2014

Leila has been a fixture in the Bay Area music scene for quite a while. I’ve seen her perform with a bunch of different bands (Saros, Amber Asylum and Hammers of Misfortune, to name a few) over the years, and I was surprised to see her release a solo album. Musically, this is mostly Ambient soundscapes that has a very strong Amber Asylum vibe to it. It’s ethereal and dreamy but in a darker way than most who do this particular style. I guess the word that really fits this best is “haunting,” because some of the tracks on Cold and Cloud wouldn’t be out of place as interludes on a King Diamond LP. King’s specialty is writing songs about the supernatural, and Cold and Cloud is like the soundtrack to walking through a haunted house. When I listen to this, the images that come to mind are those of abandoned, ruined places. It evokes an odd “nostalgic” feeling that I associate with walking where people used to gather. It’s like an echo or a ghost image of something that used to exist. I know that most fans of Metal might not be into this, but those of us who cross over into Dark Ambient or Goth music will definitely appreciate it. Fans of bands like Autumn Tears, Arcana and Amber Asylum will probably get the most enjoyment out of this because it has a similar vibe and atmospheric quality.

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