Lanu’s Many Faces
Lanu’s Her 12 Faces may have twelve faces of its own. This solo offering from the Bamboos’ Lance Ferguson is experimental and diverse, incorporating styles from folk to jazz to funk. It’s pulled together by Lanu’s electro fizz; his distinctive sound firmly solidifies Her 12 Faces as his record, even though vocalist Megan Washington makes several striking contributions.
Her 12 Faces is like a grab bag of musical ideas. Each song feels like a different thought or trajectory: opener “Beautiful Trash” is an indie-pop gem, while “Wire” features a funky bassline and R&B stylings. “Der Hotel Blume”, an instrumental track (except for some ‘yeah yeah yeahs’ of the non-Karen O variety), even has a prominent sitar line. These textures and touches feel like a glimpse into the workings of Ferguson’s mind—and make Her 12 Faces a truly standout album.
The album’s vocals are nearly as varied as its instrumental counterparts. “More Than This” and “Her 12 Faces” are both in French—the former featuring the smooth croon of Lanu himself, and the latter featuring spoken word. Megan Washington contributes vocals to five tracks, and her stylings fit as well with the folk-pop of “Roosevelt Blues” (an album highlight) as the crisp and soulful “Wire”. Like Ferguson, Washington knows how to create a compelling sonic landscape; she experiments with different tones, just as he experiments with instrumental twists.
Her 12 Faces is truly unique: it’s genre-bending, engaging and masterfully crafted. Lance Ferguson is not only inspired, he has the skill to express those ideas. Whatever his next steps as Lanu, he’ll certainly keep listeners on their toes.