How To Dress Well – Care

Album Review by Katie Hawthorne | 12 Sep 2016
Album title: Care
Artist: How To Dress Well
Label: Weird World/Domino
Release date: 23 Sep

Tom Krell has long been preoccupied with matters of the heart. As How To Dress Well, his first three albums traversed seriously rocky emotional terrain; from the lo-fi R'n'B melancholia of his debut to the maximalist pop theatrics of 2014's What Is This Heart?, Krell's soul-searching is not for the faint-hearted. Combine his fearlessness in the face of feelings with a die-hard, academic belief in the cathartic power of music, and you have Care. 

In defense of all the genres, Krell picks through tropes, traditions and nostalgia trips with the rigour of an Antiques Roadshow host – but he dusts off his findings to reveal something totally contemporary (and usually NSFW). The album freewheels through soundscapes borrowed from pop, trap, balearic house and old-fashioned balladry with irrepressible joy; I Was Terrible mixes classical piano with the bounce of pop-punk, and – don't lie – you'll definitely enjoy it.

Krell told The Skinny that Care is intended to sooth – a balm for anxiety, a salve for our worries. It's also his most personal record to date; in the face of a song like The Ruins, it's impossible not to return the favour.

Listen to: Salt Song, The Ruins