Review: Klara Lewis & Simon Fisher Turner – Care (Editions Mego, Sep 28)

Usually, I don’t have to listen to an album very many times before I feel like I can describe and express what I enjoy about it. With Care, things happened differently. I listened to it once, and afterwards I wasn’t really sure what to make of it. I listened another time, still ambivalent. I only knew that I wanted to hear it again. Now, after five or six times through, I can confidently say that Care is one of this year’s most enigmatic and elusive releases…and one of its best. Sound artist Klara Lewis and composer Simon Fisher Turner team up to create blissful, dense soundscapes with metallic edges. Opener “8” traipses across a wide map of textures, somehow feeling gradual and sudden at the same time; the swirling, airy drones flow in and out, their distance and intangibility lulling you into a trance — and then whiplashing flashes of samples and processed noises force you back to earth. This is a sonic relationship that the rest of the album continues to explore, to amazing results. The sound these two artists have achieved resides in some inexplicable middle ground between calming ambience and industrial punch, though overall the effect is calming, not so far off from the soft pink gossamer strands on the cover. A truly impressive, unique release, one that requires a lot of time to fully decipher (at least it did for me).