Giving & Receiving (KLP228)
On LAKE's third full-length album for K, Giving and Receiving, the sense that the world was at a serious state of unrest during its inception is haunting. The album was put together during the time when the Gulf oil spill was bumming everyone out, and this did a great deal to seep into the songs themselves, such as on the album's title track with the lyrics: "there used to be fish in the ocean baby...." But that's not to say that the album is depressing, it soars with beautiful melodies and gentle, yet deliberate instrumentation.
Written partially while staying at a little cabin in Northern Sweden, which band member Ashley says is the only place she's ever truly heard silence, songs like "Skeleton Costume," and "Pilgrim's Day" were born in a shed there, and have the creaky barn wood/fresh air sound to prove it. The album as a whole is all about moving forward; realizing what we as people are given every day, and figuring out how to pay back for it whenever possible.
In the band's own words: "Giving and Receiving is meant to be uplifting. It offers an antidote to depression. The more that you give, the more that you receive. However, it is contradicted by the great environmental and moral dilemma of our modern world in a cryptic nursery rhyme: 'There used to be fish in the ocean, there used to be fish in the sea, you've taken my fish from the ocean, bring back my fish to me.' I suppose the message is that although we have made irreparable damage on our planet, we still have a chance for reconciliation if we can abstain from 'overfishing.'"
Giving & Receiving was recorded at Dub Narcotic Studio in Olympia, Washington, with help from Calvin Johnson and Karl Blau. Special guest vocals by R. Stevie Moore on "Roger Miller."