MID-AIR! “Painting Music” C42 (100% Rare Cassette Tapes)

It can’t be easy to care for someone who is critically ill, and I lack (at the moment) the experience to relate to that. I can only imagine the emotional fluctuations throughout such a process, mood shifting on a dime depending on what sort of news you’re getting on any given day or on the mental and physical state of the person in your care. Short, intense bursts of anger, fear, or relief spike through your brain and body at will. The uncertainty of any given moment is a constant companion.

Mid-Air! guides us through exactly what this feels like on “Painting Music,” a rumination on facing this exact scenario with a “beloved family member.” “Painting Music,” a sampledelic instrumental hip hop/trip hop mixtape, lurches and sways, covering all manner of potential highs and lows, but mostly slipping back into that median medicated haze, either yours or the patient’s, denoting the long days and nights of worry and disquiet, all of which end up blurring together. Mainly sampling jazz and lounge records, Mid-Air! weaves together a sickly sweet narrative, one that highlights both the melodic delight of love for the person and the wobbling, offbeat rhythm of an uncontrollable situation.

But even if you are as far removed from this situation as it is possible to be, you can still apply “Painting Music” to any number of circumstances and still come out fuzzily optimistic on the other end. Easily a winner.