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Cloe Wilder: ‘My Music Tastes Like A Birthday Cake Mixed With Tears’

29 March 2024 | 9:46 am | Ellie Robinson

Wilder’s transcendent new single ‘Afterglow’ is out today.

Cloe Wilder

Cloe Wilder (Credit: Jesse DeFlorio)

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Cloe Wilder is fast proving herself to be one of the most exciting new artists in modern folk; her songs are powerfully emotive and rich in beauty, but delivered with an ethereal coolness and wistful shimmer – she can soundtrack your morning commute just as easily as she can transport you to a fully fleshed-out musical paradise.

Arriving today (March 29) is Wilder’s third single for the 2024, a transcendent collaboration with NICOLOSI titled Afterglow. It’s a dreamy acoustic ballad with atmospheric glow that instantly draws you in to their world, evoking the sound of current folk icons like Bon Iver and Lana Del Ray – artists whose stature Wilder will surely match in no time.

In a press release, she says of the new track’s genesis: “Escaping from locations is a big theme in my songs, but I also love the concept of leaving someone behind. Afterglow sort of morphed into this story of two people growing apart in the wintertime; the understanding that the house has gone cold and there’s no way to imagine what that could feel like until it happens. I absolutely love that visual.”

Afterglow comes as our latest preview of Wilder’s upcoming second EP, I Spent My Summer On The Road, and her third new song for the year following Fake ID in January and Little White Pills in February. The record is due out independently on April 19, building on the enchanting artistry she established on her debut EP, Teenage Lullabies, in 2021.

“This EP is a testament to the last three years of my life,” she said. “It’s my coming-of-age scrapbook through the lens of being 17 and confused. In the course of processing that evolution, I started to accept it and I had to write about it.

“I put out my first EP out when I was 14, so I’m beyond excited for this new introduction. These songs are really important to me, and I’ve loved being able to grow with them.”

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To celebrate today’s release of Afterglow – and the impending release of I Spent My Summer On The Road – we caught up with Wilder to learn more about musicality and how she makes it so unique; indeed, why she’s well on her way to take the world by storm. Have a listen to the new tune below (and head here to add it to your streaming platform of choice), then read on for our exclusive Q&A.

Congratulations on your new single Afterglow! Could you walk us through the story of this duet?

Thank you so much! Sam is one of my closest friends ever. We’ve been making music together since I was 14. Afterglow became this magic little moment for us. We always knew that we wanted to sing together. I’m so happy we finally got to do it. 

If your music was a flavour, what would it taste like?

I think my music tastes like a birthday cake mixed with tears. 

What’s been the biggest moment in your career so far?

I got to open on my first national tour last year. That was the happiest I’ve ever been, so I’d say it was my most important career moment. Touring had always been the dream for me.

What's the most unusual or unexpected source of inspiration you've drawn from when writing a song?

I surprise myself sometimes. It can honestly be anything. For me, a song can come from a conversation or something I overheard; the smallest interaction or the biggest one.

Can you share a hilarious or cringe-worthy moment from your early days as an artist?

I’ve been releasing music since I was 13 years old, which is an embarrassing moment in itself! I was always a little haunted by that, but I’ve started to look back on it fondly. Im really grateful for my timeline as a musician. I try not to think about all the other moments!

Who are three artists you’re vibing on right now?

I’m really loving The Paper Kites right now. That whole folk world is really exciting to me. It’s my favorite to listen to. Their song Paint absolutely wrecks me. I also love Matt Maeson; one of my absolute favorite artists for the last few years. I recently heard Djo for the first time and have been listening to him a tonne! 

Are there any Aussie artists you're keen to collaborate with in future?

The Paper Kites are my absolute favorite, so that would be a dream. Of course, I would just love to play some shows over in Australia and finally meet a koala. 

What’s something that fans not might know about you?

If you’re interested in a random fun fact, I was technically named after a Bratz doll.

What's in the works for you in 2024?

I’m currently on tour with Charlotte Sands! I’m putting out my second EP very soon. I feel really close to this project. I’ve also been writing a ton of new music and filming a ton of videos. I’m officially moving to LA this summer! I’m excited to finally dive in. Of course, I’m hoping to get some more tours together. That part’s my favorite.