The title is important. After the better part of a decade with the band, two years ago health issues forced Kim Seviour to walk away from Touchstone.
The singer had been dealing with chronic fatigue for some time and needed to make some changes in her life. However, abandoning music was never an option and Recovery Is Learning is Seviour’s first solo album. Co-written with and produced by her friend John Mitchell of Lonely Robot, Frost* and others, it’s perhaps rather more pop-based than some may have expected, though as their cover of Tears For Fears’ Mad World served to remind us, Touchstone never hid from that particular element of their makeup. Dizzying time signatures are in short supply but it’s great to hear Seviour in powerful voice, soaring above a set of songs that mostly favours the formula of less-is-more. Keyboards tend to dominate though Mitchell’s guitar is, of course, another pivotal element, his solos adding an additional aura of class to the album’s title track. Kim’s study of her condition seeps into many of the lyrics – she calls it “a truly organic self-fulfilling prophecy” – but instead of self-pity this album resonates with acceptance, optimism and positivity.