Alternative pop - with loose influences from the Kate Bush / Tori Amos /
Bjork school of damn-the-conventions artistry. But not as progressive as those
artists - Care Package is imaginative, unconstrained by convention, and
somewhat song-oriented. And oddly - it gets better as the record progresses.
Opening track "Come To Bed" is less suggestive than its title suggests - and
is probably the most approachable piece on the CD, with the vocals dominating
almost every bar, leaving little space for the instrumentation to flourish -
which is a pity because the simple but clean piano and keyboard lines and the
occasional wisps of violin are quite pleasing. Think Kate Bush on Valium.
It gets more interesting toward the latter half - and it's interesting to
note that many songs seem to be matched pairs:
Take "Ampm Three" and "Ampm Two", for example. "Three" is a spacey, ambient,
drone-rock kind of thing that does nothing and goes nowhere for 3 minutes and
might remind you of the noises in your head after a heavy night on the town.
"Two" starts with an awful synth-pop rhythm, then develops into a simple
vocal-oriented piece with straightforward lyrics and slightly chaotic
instrumentals with violin and cello lines weaving their way into some sections.
Then there's "Safer One" and "Safer Two", clearly the standout pieces on the
record, and loosely based on the same theme. "One" is an all-instrumental,
nicely layered piece with pleasing piano, keys and harp melodies that build a
slow, lazy crescendo before gradually easing off and morphing seamlessly into
"Two" - which is a soft love song, vocal-dominated, but with the pianist's bass
notes dictating the pace.
Another matched pair is "Bicycle Bell", a 1-minute somnolent collection of
random gongs punctuated by a bicycle bell - nice ideas that aren't developed.
It morphs into "Formless Scientific", with its straightforward vocal melody sung
over dark instrumentation dominated by a staccato motif.
There's one of those damned annoying 4 minutes of silence before closer "The
Color Blue", an almost minimalist piano piece played without an enormous display
of musicianship, though it lays down a pleasing, sleepy little lullaby.
Teletextile is a reincarnation of the Pamela Martinez Band that played the
New England circuit, where Martinez studied at Berklee. Care Package's 11
songs slip by in 45 minutes - which is just short enough to keep your interest.
Any more would have been too much.
1. Come to Bed
4. Bicycle Bell
5. Formless Scientific
6. Ampm Three
7. Ampm Two
8. Safer One
9. Safer Two
11.The Color Blue