The press materials for Megan Lights new five-song EP Black & White suggest comparisons to Sarah McLachlan and Norah Jones, and both touchstones are viable, particularly the latters breathy, understated vocals. But on the opening track, Waste It All Way, Lights singing recalls the angelic, otherworldly sound of Joanna Newsom, though shes less affected and elfin than the harp-wielding phenom. Light writes dreamy indie-pop songs in which guitar and piano equally share the spotlight, and Black & White features crisp, focused arrangements that never clutter the proceedings. With its dark, brooding tone and minor-key piano chords, the compelling Asleep in Our Dreaming is a standout track, wandering close to Fiona Apple territory (though not specifically to Apples similarly titled Sleep to Dream). Light will be joined at her release party by singer-songwriter Chip Greene and balls-out rock marauders StackMagic, whose guitarist, Nathan Spears, also plays in Lights band.
Sun., Jan. 31, 6:30 p.m., 2010