Emerging from Brooklyn's crowded field of shoegaze-influenced artists comes the unique vocal talent of Shana Falana. The current weekly residency at Pete's Candy Store for the month of September (there are two more shows, the 21st and 28th at 10:00 pm) is leading up to her the release show for her new EP ""In The Light" on October 6 at Shea Stadium. Produced by Kevin McMahaon (Swants, Titus Andronicus) and mixed by Gareth Jones (Grizzly Bear, Mogwai, Interpol) the record perfectly captures what Shana does best: positive music of wonderment and discovery. Inspired by Bulgarian folk music, her sound often reflects the genre's asymmetrical rhythms. “Light The Fire”is hypnotic, chill-enducing and powerful. “In The Light” presents vocals that are pure and straightforward, with diction having only the slightest of creative affectation (“everything” becomes “Av-erything”). A strong cello undercurrent allows Shana to soar above with multi-layered choruses of her own vocals. Never unappealing sleigh bells usher in “Yeah Yeah.” An even more ethereal choir sings those words to varying patterns. The guitars begin to chunk along and the drums thunder in kind. Her vocal production embraces the same cathedrals Simon & Garfunkel explored during their finest moments (think “Only Living Boy In NYC”). Catch Shana at one of her upcoming shows for a truly rewarding listening experience. - Dave Cromwell
"Uptempo" and "Pop" are by themselves two concepts that - in the business of being an indie band - can take you quite far; but if on top of that you add to the equation also comparisons to The Smiths, then the hype can get out of control. Brooklyn's Drowners have more than one similarity with Morrisey's act, and although they will surely feel belittled by such comparison, they should not, because no artists really managed to be The Smiths' worthy musical heir yet (like, for example, XTC were for The Beatles, Robin Hitchcock for Syd Barrett, and The Strokes for Lou Reed - uhm, maybe...).
The band's 3 songs debut EP features the remarkable single "Between Us Girls" (streaming below) which immediately throws us back to the days of "Meat is Murder," with the electric guitar alternating between jangly parts and arpeggios, and Welsh frontman Matt Hitt singing semi-melancholically about some girls' hair length - rather than about how big they are... The edge is slightly punkier, while the songwriting reveals an almost clinical concision (the song clocks in just under 2 minutes, with the first chorus coming in after 26" - A&R allergic to intros will dig that).
The second song, "You've Got it All Wrong," beats a similar musical path, tackling the infinite well of inspiration that (for Brits) is life at the pub, with the difference of a slower bridge, which acts as a breather for the final chorus. Final track "A Shell Across the Tongue" is the punkier of the bunch, but also the one with the least memorable melody.
This is obviously a band with enormous songwriting potential. If they'll manage to write songs as good as these and integrate their influences in a more mature and personal sound, the world can be theirs. - PDG