Lifestyle & Culture

Review: Night Shade – Lanie Lane

Lanie Lane’s new record Night Shade is a mix of old and new, writes Sarah Webb.


Sydney songwriter Lanie Lane returned with a new single Celeste in August and now a forthcoming second album, Night Shade. This latest offering is released tomorrow, and is a record that documents Lane’s personal and artistic journey.

The transient nature of the songs clearly mark transition in her life: a time of bravery, adventure, honesty and inner growth. It’s an openly self-defining record and undoubtedly the record she really wants us to hear.

The album’s winning song is obviously the gentle vocal hooks and glistening guitars of Celeste, for she is ‘the one who knows’ – guiding listeners through the unseen, in tune with the magic of existence. It leaves us feeling unbound by limitations or self-doubt.

The whole record is ideal for solitary yet comforting nights by moonlight and a bonfire, campfire, or any fire really. Just as long as there are some flames to match the heat of this album.

Solid opener Salute has Lane’s pure vocals penetrating through ambience, complete with wailing, crashing cymbals, belting drums and brass. I See You wanders in a direction that is more airy-fairy, before the bass of hit single Celeste brings the whole album back to earth with its coastal beach vibe and cool chorus.

Then there is the affectionate and heart-warming Olympia. It captivates listeners through its sublime chorus and unrelenting hook “don’t you lose it”, that prolongs the ‘night in’ feel of the album.

La Loba (Spanish for the mythical she-wolf) is reminiscent of old campfire horror tales and creates a ghost story vibe, while The Phantom is strange jazz and creepy brass that catches listeners off-guard, like a shadow in the night. Its title does the song justice.

The glitzy You Show Me How I Should Like It has no air of mystery about it, but is the first real kick on the album, as it is undeniably sassy. The rhythm of the reverberating drums is sure to get hearts racing and exhilarate listeners.

No Sound too drips with intimacy, with claustrophobic lines like “enemy’s close, breathing my face”. The tricky guitar work also makes it well-suited for smoky nightclubs.

The raw sound of Made For It takes listeners on a slow journey to witness Lane’s willingness to emotionally strip herself bare. This intimate track is perfect to hear in the comfort of one’s bedroom (where Lane recorded most of her songs), as lyrics like “my weakness is fate” and “corner me in” are delivered with husky persuasion. So it’s only fitting that the follow-up track Underneath enters to enhance this openhearted feel.

The lovely Mother has Lane revealing her fragility, innocence and kinship with female mother figures, but the uplifting, 10 minute lullaby may have listeners wandering off in thought from its longevity.

Nonetheless, Night Shade is absolutely a feminine body of work. Although it doesn’t quite work for those wanting something electric and pounding, it’s best listened to during night time slumbers. It delivers strong songwriting from Lane and connects her to listeners on an emotional level.

If this is the album you’ve been waiting to hear, get ready for an emotional yet empowering journey, as Lane is clearly a voice for the modern day woman.

Lanie Lane is touring nationally throughout October and November.

Image: Mushroom Promotions

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