There are few things that embody the spirit of social distancing quite like long motorcycle rides. But for Cruel Miracle, that was one of the few things that brought together the core members of the Boston band during the pandemic. While most projects struggled to cautiously assemble over the past several months as COVID-19 kept collaborative restrictions in place, three members of Cruel Miracle took to their bikes for open air and open travel, away from the masses, and ended up getting a new record out of it.
The band’s new EP, Camaraderie, dropped on Christmas, with a visual for opening track “Revving” surfacing on New Year’s Eve. All five tracks on the EP, with song titles like “Ripping” and “Backroads,” are not only inspired by their year spent safely traveling across the region, but helped soundtrack it. The motorcycle sounds heard on the recordings are their own, and they enlisted an arsenal of instrumentation — harmonica (performed by Sting’s Shane Sager, a friend of the band), Wurlitzer, congas, Hammond organ — never before heard on a Cruel Miracle release. It all helped form the elements of the Camaraderie concept, and reflect the moto experience and lifestyle.
“2020 has been an atypical year, and we decided to release an atypical album,” Cruel Miracle tell Vanyaland. The idea of this album sparked early in 2020 when COVID-19 happened. [We] found an escape from pandemic mayhem through going out on motorcycle rides, which was one of the only available options for us that would fit cautionary protocols during early 2020 lockdown in the state of Massachusetts.”
Soon, the ideas around Camaraderie started taking shape.
“We started filming our recurring adventures every time we could, and soon enough decided that it would be a very good idea to write music that would perfectly fit, like a glove would, to our content,” they add. “It became obvious that all of this had to be done under a DIY approach due to the obstacles that became working around a pandemic situation. So that’s what we did; we kept ourselves busy creating new art in one of the worst years humanity has ever faced. A great way to not lose our minds in the midst of a global pandemic.”