Carla Dal Forno - You Know What It's Like LP
Label: Blackest Ever Black
Carla Dal Forno's solo debut emerges on the heels of her work fronting the bleary art-pop outfits F Ingers and Tarcar, both of whom also have releases on the seminal Blackest Ever Black imprint. She's a liminal songwriter, often highlighting the space between the decentered, oblique elements. The songs economically plink through her spare instrumentation and suspend themselves in a chilly vamping of 4AD ethereal-dub atmospherics. Throughout the album, her arrangements spin through collapsed basslines, sad-girl piano notes and the slow-motion whirr of a drum machine here and there. As instrumentals, these recall the strange interludes of fumbled objects and spectral half-melody that dot Swell Maps albums. Yet, it is her voice that is the key to the success of You Know What It's Like. She spools that voice in a deadpan cooing with near monotone delivery, yet it's disarmingly beautiful. Dal Forno's gossamer pop is at its best on tracks like "Fast Moving Cars" and "What You Gonna Do Now?" There, she effortlessly channels the A.C. Marias/Dome sci-fi ballads of psychic disengagement amidst languid reverberations and satellite flicker of minimalist electronica.