Christina Carter Living Contact

The latest in Kranky’s mission of reissuing all of Charalambides’ out-of-print past works, Living Contact is a remarkably personal account of Christina Carter’s improvised acoustic guitar playing and careening vocal style. Recorded on a boom box and four-track tape between 1994 and ’98 and released in a CD-R edition of only 100 in 2001, the six sprawling and meditative tracks found here paint as clear a portrait of the female Carter (she and her ex-husband, Tom Carter, form the core of Charalambides) and her art as possible. Unlike past Charalambides releases, or even Tom Carter’s solo work, the focus of Christina’s acoustic guitar playing isn’t so much unbalanced intensity as harmonious peace, though things do occasionally become unsettling, like on the slightly off-kilter trip "Going Down.” On Living Contact Carter succeeds in creating a meditative mood that effectively transcends the barriers of songwriting without ever being pretentious, alienating or boring, which makes it a crucial addition to any Charalambides fan’s collection. (Kranky)