Boomkat Product Review:
Klein follows last year's dumbfounding "Harmattan" with a sickeningly dense lattice of corroded instrumentation and barbed, dissociated theorizing. Darkest, Blackest ambient moves, deranged lo-fi punk and completely unwound baroque soul - ridiculously strong gear.
'Cave in the Wind' is Klein's latest long-form tome, an elevated miscellany of confident gesturing that comes with the assertion that the only samples used are news snippets from the USA's Roe vs. Wade repeal. Those booming clips root the lengthy opening 'Fair in a minor' in 2022's precarious social reality, punctuating Klein's vocal and churning, euphoric pads. It's music that mirrors the chaotic feeling of scrolling thru social media with one eye on the television: cascading sonics that replicate our popped synapses and fogged memories without resorting to placid nostalgia.
Comfort is far from Klein's mind on this one - her string treatments chill to the bone as she slices into serial thriller drones and bends them into broad, almost hilariously unsettling portamento slides. This mixture of horror, reality and absurdity is where Klein sounds completely in her element, formulating a narrative that's got more tension and release than anything A24 might care to slide out. At the mid mark, the track situates itself in a cavernous studio somewhere, where twanging strings rub against boiling pipes and clipped acoustic drums, sounding like a dying steam train breaking down. Brassy Hollywood jingles and cut-n-paste firework cracks are spliced with chipmunked vocals and disquieting church bells, notched into computer keyboard clacks and general MIDI sputters.
Klein takes us to task, her music is so completely intentional and sharply fanged. While the majority of self-consciously "experimental" composers and producers seem content to rest on established pillars of respectability or cannibalize their nostalgic weaknesses, Klein sounds as if she's doing the exact opposite, challenging herself and her audience to consider what it is they're listening to. She pushes the boundaries of taste and toys with our perceptions of harmony and dissonance, rarely letting herself marinate in detachment.
'Saving Grace' is lighter, opening with birdsong and instrumental clangs before spiraling down the plughole into alien, screwed half-speed wails. It's a backdrop for Klein's vocals, dropping casual, wordless ad-libs across a bed of contorted klangs. She wipes the slate clean again with 'top shotta' and what sounds like instruments dropped into a skip. Viscous and hypnotically unsettling, it's somehow also one of Klein's most moving tracks, like a radical answer to AFX's apolitical ambient milestone "SAW II".
Once again we're floored by Klein's multi-layered messaging and clear musical gesturing. Her art is gleefully unbalanced, poignant and completely unforgettable - if yr out here looking for the intersection of Farrah Abraham, Dreamcrusher and the GRM, this is it.