Devotee’s of Chicago shoegaze, and fans of our Psychedelic Sunday feature, may already be familiar with the music of Omar Rashan, better known as Charlatan. We sat down and interviewed him last August during the recording sessions for his self-titled debut, which he wrote, recorded and released on his own.
Omar gave us some insight into his influences and summed up his songwriting process by saying:
“I just try to keep it poppy. Sometimes it can be an upbeat, poppy song, many times, it’s dark – but I still just try to stay in that vein. Just keeping it simple.”
The finished product is just that, a collection of dark & ominous songs that you can dance to. Omar’s pop sensibilities shine through all the layers of drum machines and reverb and make the album an enjoyable listening experience, whether you’re alone at home or at a dimly lit club.
The album pays homage to the golden age of ’80s and ’90s post-punk & shoegaze but manages to bring plenty of new ideas to the table.
Working as a one-man band, Omar has the challenge of providing rhythm, melody, lead, and vocals all at once. Through a coordinated series of button presses and guitar riffs, as well as a hefty rig of effects pedals, synths, and drum machines, he’s able to bring his songs to life on stage.
Charlatan is now officially available digitally via Bandcamp, iTunes, and Amazon. You can also grab a CD copy at many of our fine Chicago record stores such as Reckless Records, saki, & Laurie’s Planet of Sound, just to name a few.
The album is free to stream on Bandcamp, so you can delve right into it before you pick up a copy at Thursday’s show.
Joining the bill are Solemn Meant Walks, Rocket Miner and Jolly Korea.
It’s all happening this Thursday, December 5th at Subterranean (2011 W North Ave). Doors open at 7:30, show starts at 8:30, and tickets are $8. The event is 21 and over.
Come celebrate some great new Chicago music and experience a spectacular live show all at once. Have a few drinks too, the bar usually likes that. See you there!