Arizona-based songwriter Karima Walker has announced the follow-up to her 2017 debut album: it’s called Waking the Dreaming Body and comes out on February 26 via Keeled Scales and Orindal Records. Originally scheduled to record with a producer in New York, Walker changed plans when the pandemic hit, instead creating a makeshift studio in her Tucson where she recorded and produced the album on her own. She says:
“I wanted these songs to stand alone as complete worlds. This required a shift in my usual way of writing. I found myself trying to escape from an excess of interiority by exploring outward, by thinking about the mirroring that happens when you seek connection to others and to the world—when you try to bring the outside in. I sought to make arrangements that swell at certain moments and barely hold together at others, moving with my breath and other rhythms connecting my body to the natural world.”
The first song shared from Waking the Dreaming Body is “Reconstellated”, and here she instantly succeeds in creating the “complete world” she envisioned, as lightly ringing synth quickly immerses you in the bubble of her thoughts. Whispering guitar and her softly-sung words match with a touch that’s so delicate as to only be able to exist in a liminal space – a dream environment where Walker’s vision and the listener meet. “Sonoran sky plays a movie / Draw a line to the stars inside of me,” she begins, painting a vivid image of a quiet landscape with an infinite sky above. The lucid imagery keeps coming throughout “Reconstellated”, but emerging between these pictures is a desire for a rebirth from the singer, culminating in the simple wish, “reconstellate the stars inside of me,” which she sings as if she’s sending it up on a breeze to the heavens, hoping an unknowable power might be able to help her.
Watch the Karima Walker’s self-created video for “Reconstellated” below.