released: 2020-12-04 )
All We Grow (10th Anniversary Deluxe Edition)
All We Grow was and is a convergence of S. Carey's young lifetime spent immersed in music: his Waltz For Debby-era Bill Evans inflected jazz tendencies; his performance degree in classical percussion from the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire; his central role in the galeforce power of the Bon iver live show; his hints of Mark Hollis' Talk Talk. In his downtime on tour with Bon Iver, Sean would spend time pining for his life at home, dreaming and composing in that headspace. During infrequent tour breaks at home he would patiently record these pieces, adding layers each time. Two years later, those parts converged to make an album. Engineered by Jaime Hansen and Brian Joseph, intermittently at home and at April Base (Justin Vernon's studio outside Eau Claire), All We Grow is an all-encompassing headphone experience as intimate as chamber music and as ambitious as a symphony.
All We Grow also retests the waters of modern classical composition, investigating the moodiness generated by percussive repetition in a manner familiar to fans of Steve Reich. For as spacious as they are, Carey's compositions are incredibly dynamic, with moments of bombast held right next to moments of subtle depth and texture. Carey's formal training may have been as a percussionist, but he also sings with as much beauty, power and precision as he plays. What seems like a melodic whisper is actually much bigger, rich and acrobatic, soothing in the particular way that it pulls you close. How apropos, then, that this anniversary edition of All We Grow adds a cover of Tom Waits' "Take it With Me", a timeless lullaby from another artist whose voice strikes us in bracing, unexpected ways.
Ten years ago, S. Carey and All We Grow crept into our world like a seedling, delicate and unassuming, but putting down roots that would deepen and grow whether we saw them or not. Ten years later, S. Carey and All We Grow endure as a part of our soil, an earthen, inextricable part of planet Jagjaguwar. At a time when serenity feels particularly scarce, All We Grow stands as a classic album - born without expectation and met with adoration - a cathartic result of Carey's extraordinary and vibrant life experiences that resonates loss, dreams and heart in a manner so instantly relatable, you feel as though you can touch it.