Christina Carter Original Darkness

On Christina Carter’s last solo release for Kranky, Electrice, she wrote and recorded the four long pieces in a single key and tuning to explore possibilities within a confined space. On Original Darkness, she is free to once again fly unbound, though apparently with a heavy heart. Carter, who is also half of Texas act Charalambides’ permanent core, had commonly used her lilting siren call wordlessly and double-tracked to float above the singeing interplay of acoustic guitars and pedal steel. Here, tracks like "Capable of Murder” have the same weight of sound but the music is much more concise and Carter’s lyrics are equally direct, though incantatory. "In Prisoned Body” adds a slightly off-kilter Touré electric pattern to the more standard acoustic one. Slight rifts like this, and on the title track’s just off-melody xylophone, create a hallucinatory dreaminess that keys into the album’s heartsickness. Ms. Carter kicks at this darkness; she does not go gently into it. (Kranky)