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David Bazan - Care LP
Bazan's craft has never been, as is the case for some artists, in the creation of new worlds, instead he simply shrinks this very real one, drawing focus to the intimate blemishes of life, the small cracks in it all; ambiguous shapes of the night, slowly focused if stared at for long enough; half-finished collections of baseball cards long past the desire for completion; an egg yolk leaking in to the surrounding white, changing it with a sinewy lava flash of colour. Slow and painless and painfully slow. It remains, and grows, more mesmerising with each passing season, weathered and worn as it is by such a thing. --Gold Flake Paint
Bazan's candid songwriting here examines his domestic life as a husband and father. One technique he uses for this is a 'turn' or 'volta' towards the end of each song, a single line that either changes the meaning or reveals it. In Care, it's stop romanticizing cheating; in Sparkling Water, he confesses I don't want to be alone; and as Inner Lives paints a scene of a morning coffee and joke between spouses, it ends with the line, in an instant I remembered who we are. Album closer The Ballad of Pedro y Blanco closes with the lyric put down your guitar, go enjoy it right now, a poignant idea concerning struggle between touring and domestic life. The sonic risks and personal openness make Care the best thing Bazan has done in years. --Exclaim!
Care cements a new era for Bazan as a solo artist. His music has moved passed acoustic guitars and jumped headfirst into synth-laden pieces drenched in texture. Standout Disappearing Ink demonstrates that evolution, bringing a blistering, dark funk feel to his brooding punk. The album's final songs find Bazan experimenting with new sonic spaces some twinkling gently, others booming and begging to be heard. With closely detailed lyricism, Bazan sings about nostalgia, personal revelations and sudden jolts of reality. In Up All Night, he summons youthful joy, recalling memories of school being out, sleeping all day and staying up late. Make Music explores the ways in which the passage of time changes us as our naïvety eventually fades; Bazan sings, idn t we always vote for love/ When our friends were breaking up/ And they d go and see a counselor/ To find it s not enough. --Stereogum
A2 Up All Night
A3 Disappearing Ink
A4 Sparkling Water
A5 Permanent Record
B1 Make Music
B3 Inner Lives
B4 Keep Trying
B5 The Ballad of Pedro Y Blanco