Veteran NY psych-pop musician Shana Falana delivered a transcendental live experience at Cheer Up Charlies late Thursday evening. Emerging from New York’s vast drone/psych scene, Falana combines live looping of reverb-drenched vocals and guitar with tribal drums and stunning visual projections.
Falana is currently on tour in support of her latest album, Here Comes The Wave. The album’s nine ‘dark pop’ tracks deal in “paradoxes and oppositions: drones stormy and serene, layers of warmth streaked with wildness and troubled riffs, ethereal forces at war and play.”
The origin of Here Comes The Wave began in 2006 after Falana lost half of her index finger in a workplace elevator accident. Oddly enough, the morning of the accident, Falana was stopped for a minor traffic violation. As she sat in her car waiting for what would be a warning, rested cassette tapes of Django Reinhardt and Jerry Garcia, two guitarists famous for adapting to missing or damaged fingers in the pursuit of their art.
Falana, who previously battled with addiction wrote furiously following the accident and the burst of productivity led to nearly half of Here Comes The Wave a decade later. “Somehow, I knew those songs would serve me well later,” states the long-sober and creatively disciplined artist.
The emotional turmoil of addiction and calls to clarity through recovery, acceptance and affirmation wash over Here Comes The Wave. The underlying themes of the album deal with the songwriter’s gain from loss, maturity and closure. On the album’s single, “Cool Kids”, linked at bottom, Falana delivers an ethereal message to her younger self and to all young people disfigured by social pressures, driven to addiction, marginalized by gender and racial identities.
Check out the single along with the images below of Shana Falana at Cheer Up Charlies.
Photos by: Mindi Westhoff of Time and Place Photography