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Canadian-born, London-based producer, songwriter and vocalist Chloé Raunet aka C.A.R. releases her third album, ‘Crossing Prior Street’, on Ransom Note Records. Full of bruised-but-ultimately hopeful electronic art pop, the album tells Chloe’s story of escaping a broken childhood in Vancouver, and ﬁnding her way to the lonely streets of East London, at the tender age of 16.
“The one time in my life I lived alone, it was on a street called Prior. I was halfway through my teens and the place had lasting impact. This was a tiny, creaky ﬂat, high in the eaves of an old wooden townhouse. Damp and cold, run down, sparsely furnished. Bare bulbs dangled from the ceiling, eyeing up the midnight visitors who’d come knowing at my ﬁre escape. I’d let them in and lie limp as they crawled all over me. Thin mattress on the ﬂoor, welcoming whatever company I could get.”
An endorsement of the personal journey, ‘Crossing Prior Street’ is the sound of Raunet reconciling different sides of herself emotionally, artistically and sonically. The sparse production of minimal elements gives the album a direct punch. Booming drum machines, dissonant cold wave, skewed post-punk and esoteric pop juxtapose but join in strange and interesting ways. Chloé cites this clash as a deﬁning characteristic of the album, which was equally catalysed by her love of raw machine music and the catharsis of song.
Like the sun breaking through clouds, shining onto a grey rainy day, the album glistens. Although proudly pop, there’s nothing idealistic, fake or saccharine here, as Raunet captures realistic glimpses of beauty found in everyday life, mixed amidst the gloom.