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Caracol release “Flooded Field”

Caracol isn’t a newcomer to the music world, but she still performs with the imagination and inspiration of an emerging artist. Those aforementioned inspired and imaginative qualities are now, eleven years since 2008’s L’Arbre aux Parfums, married to a level of confidence you expect from a veteran writer and performer. Her latest single “Flooded Field” comes from her recent album release 2018’s Symbolism and features a guest vocal and songwriting collaboration with Detroit rapper Illa J as well as an accompanying video release. It has experienced considerable success on a variety of platforms and even a cursory listen to the track illustrates why.

The song hinges on a couple of key musical elements. The fusion of electropop and reggae textures sets Caracol’s song apart from much of the standard fare filling the modern music marketplace and there is a dreamlike, near ethereal, atmosphere enveloping a lot of the song’s sonic architecture. “Flooded Field” has a mid tempo pace and, despite its average duration, never sounds like it is rushing towards its conclusion – instead, Caracol demonstrates the confidence discussed earlier in the review through the song’s patient development and her relaxed vocal.

“Flooded Field” hinges on one key image for much of the song and the remaining writing builds from that, but you may find yourself wishing for additional lyrics as the song unfolds. The tendency to continue revisiting the key imagery stated from the outset is a small disservice to the track, but it is likewise easy to comprehend any potential reservations Caracol may harbor about overburden the track with needless verbiage.

Illa J’s lyric and vocal contributions to “Flooded Field” give the track a dramatic spin, nothing too heavy handed, but nonetheless incorporating an important alternate voice contrasting Caracol’s own. He exudes much of the same confidence we hear from Caracol, albeit manifested in a different fashion, and his talents never cut into the spotlight focused on her vocal. The song’s video as style and substance alike. There are obvious pains taken with the visual imagery and it strikes the right complementary note while standing on its own as an impressive video document.

Caracol’s career is filled with nominations, awards, and residences many performers would be proud to list among their accomplishments. Her latest single “Flooded Field” is another of those accomplishments and shows that, instead of settling into comfortable stasis, Caracol remains a searching and thoughtful music artist whose gaze is always looking forward.

Mindy McCall

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