Listening to the self-titled debut from Ukrainian-born, New York-based singer and songwriter Lana Mir (August 24, Unfiltered), we think it's safe to say no one broke a sweat during the making of the album. But we suspect that was the plan all along. With gentle electronic rhythms -- sometimes merging into bossa nova territory -- and a cool, spacious ambience from producer Andy Chase (Ivy, Brookville), Mir's lilting, detached vocals drift from the speakers as if tethered by the slightest of thread. Fortunately this icy cocktail of an album has just enough of a mercurial kick to pull us into the hazily seductive melodies without much prodding. This is the kind of album that's nice to wake up to as long as the plan is to stay in bed for a while.
The low-watt appeal of Mir's style can be found in the simply constructed, bittersweet version of The Stone Roses' "I Wanna Be Adored". Behind a backdrop of strummed guitars and piano notes that sound suspended in air, Mir sings "I don't have to sell my soul" with a shrug of melancholy and regret, the title not so much a plea as a whispered suggestion. We're also taken with album opener "Say You Need Me", Sade-styled "To Be Wrong" and delectable "Believe In Me": songs that reveal themselves slowly as melodies build line by line and the beguiling hooks creep into the subconscious. Recommended.
Lana Mir - "I Wanna Be Adored" (from the album Lana Mir)
Ukranian born, New York based Lana Mir is a global chanteuse – a fresh and radiant voice to arrive on U.S shores. Her debut album, Lana Mir, is a breezy and disarming collection of songs that wholly reflects Lana’s unconventional journey as an artist, adventurer and insatiable lover of music.
Recorded at Stratosphere Sound in New York City and produced by Andy Chase (Ivy, Brookville), the album uncannily mirrors her own experience of popular music as something current, worldly and timeless. It is this passion and tenacity – as both a seeker and creator – that would take Lana across the world, armed with the spark she needed to thrive, and ultimately shine. Lana was born in Kiev and, despite her limited access to popular music, she spent hours holding a tape recorder up to the speakers to capture songs by the American pop stars of that time like Madonna and Cyndi Lauper.
After recording a song and becoming a huge success in the Ukraine and France, she left Kiev for New York City in 2003. Living in Brooklyn, she voraciously consumed all of the musical influences that NYC had to offer, learning as much as she could about jazz, bossa nova, Brazilian music and alternative and rock music. With a new, seemingly infinite sphere of creative ammunition and musical reference points at her disposal, Lana focused on writing songs that embodied her own unique voice, with all of its intrinsic vitality, enthusiasm and grace.
Musician/producer Andy Chase promptly signed her to Unfiltered Records and agreed to produce her debut album. In January of 2010, her hard work and passion came to fruition. Lana will release her debut in the fall of 2010, filled with cool, airy pop songs, an appreciation of jazz, and contemporary and vintage 60s-style pop all wrapped up in warm, gauzy production. One thing is for certain, the world will be seeing a lot of Lana Mir in the years to come.