Pop music is no stranger to indifference—well, that’s how it may seem on the surface. In late 2011, Drake revealed the title track of his then-forthcoming record, Take Care, which was a tender declaration of love and not a passive aggressive goodbye, as the title may suggest. The following year, Icona Pop and Charli XCX had their own massive hit, though it went in the other direction: “I! Don’t! Care! I love it,” they sang, proclaiming their messy freedom. Not to mention one of the biggest songs on the charts right now—a collaboration between Justin Bieber and Ed Sheeran called “I Don’t Care”; they imply that the only thing that matters is the presence of their “baby.”

Gabriel Gutierrez, aka smileswithteeth, has made his own statement on the subject of care, having just released an LP with that name. Reflecting on how he has described his past projects, the artist revealed, “I notice it all has [had] to do with becoming a better person.” He admitted that there is room for more personal growth, which is to say that this album is not proof that he has abandoned the quest to be better. Instead, he chose to take a different, communal perspective for his latest effort. care is a beacon of hope that takes literally the adage, “it takes a village.”

“When I started conceptualizing this project,” Gutierrez told the 405, “I was looking for a way to make my music sustainable, and to challenge myself creatively in the process.” The album began as a series of jazz improvisations which he would later deconstruct and stitch back together. But first, the world set in.

“A few months after I recorded those sessions, Trump got elected and I decided to apply to law school. A few months after that, my then-girlfriend and I broke up and I had to learn to reach out to folks, receive care, and return that care. During the process of mixing and finalizing the record, I wanted to reflect those changes, but not let the process of caring/being cared for be reduced to its most individualized form. Incorporating care into a political vision for the future is important to me. I think it’s deeply informed by the people around me, what we take and give to each other, and the world I wanted us all to inhabit. Becoming a better person can’t happen alone, and neither can fighting for a better world.”

Every song references the very community that has contributed, in some way, to Gutierrez’s betterment. His grandma tells a story over the melody in “so,” making the music into a conduit for this fragile human connection. There are two more fortified guest appearances deeper into care, including Olivia Kaplan and Robin Dann (of bernice). Dann’s voice, for example, tilts upward in “fill” as the production falls out from under her; sounds come together as haphazard stairs to keep up the illusion of floating, but the tone change is noticeable—all the confidence in the world means nothing without the world to pick you up.

There are obvious rays of light, as with tracks “love” and “feel.” Both burst with friendly, metallic production that is evident on previous smileswithteeth releases; “love” in particular mimics a platonic feeling, growing out of the repetitive into the extraordinary. Then there are harder truths that Gutierrez makes accessible, such as “mend” and “ask.” And, despite being one of the shortest tracks, “spill” facilitates a cathartic flood of feelings.

Hope is powerful, but distant. Care is its immediate counterpart, which depends upon how we treat ourselves and others today. The latest smileswithteeth record should be your guide for joyous unrest in the coming months. After all, Trump’s re-election is right around the corner, so if there’s ever a time to care, it’s now.