Serbian-Canadian musician Dana Gavanski announces Yesterday Is Gone, her debut album out March 27th via Ba Da Bing (US) / Full Time Hobby (UK/EU). Following recently released singles/videos “Catch” and “One By One,” she presents a new single, “Good Instead of Bad,” a song about “the desire to make up for everything that wasn’t done or wasn’t done right. The muddiness of breaking up, and not knowing if it’s the right decision. Not saying the right things, not being able to express the complexity of what we’re feeling.” By turns break-up album, project of curiosity, and, as Dana puts it, “a reckoning with myself,” Yesterday Is Gone is an album of longing and devotion to longing, and of the uncertainty that arises from learning about oneself, of pushing boundaries, falling hard, and getting back up. Moments of beguilement splinter a backdrop of tenderly picked guitar, bass, synth, and poppier elements, which commune to produce her own kind of wall of sound. Each component is meticulously placed, yielding a deeply sincere response to the chaos of human emotion.
Born in Vancouver to a Serbian family, Dana has always harbored a desire to sing. In her final year of university in Montreal, she picked up the guitar left by her ex-partner and decided to re-learn. After a summer spent assisting her father on a film set, she wrote her Spring Demos EP in 2017. The following Yesterday Is Gone reflects Dana’s aim “to make something bigger, more thought through.” Steeped in determination and uncertainty in equal measure, the album took shape after she returned from a writing residency in Banff, Alberta. Adrift in Toronto, Dana struggled to feel at home and connected to people, but the solitude also allowed her to ground herself in writing. She kept office-style hours at her bedroom desk every day until she started to understand the writing process.
Yesterday Is Gone was co-produced between Dana, Toronto-based musician Sam Gleason, and Mike Lindsay (Tunng and LUMP). While Sam helped Dana bring out the tunes, Mike’s input marked the beginning of developing Dana’s sound. The two kept stripped it down to the essentials, keeping things bare and letting the songs speak for themselves. The album shapeshifted as it passed through the hands of Dana, Sam, and Mike, taking on different tastes, feelings, and visions. When Dana performed the songs with a band, they found new form again. She was intrigued by performers like David Bowie and Aldous Harding, who inhabit different personalities on stage, physically tuning themselves to their music.
While on a crowded train last spring, Dana sang the Macedonian song “Jano Mome” to a cheering group of commuters. The moment, brief but beautiful, lays bare Dana’s craving for live spontaneity. But it also reflects her injection of stylish drama and vivid emotion into the folk landscape that inspires her, from contemporary singers H Hawkline and Julia Holter, to stalwarts Fairport Convention, Anne Briggs, Connie Converse, and Judee Sill.
“Often we have to go a little far in one direction to learn something about ourselves,” Dana says. The months of solitary writing and self-doubt testify to this, but they’ve led to Yesterday Is Gone: an optimistic, steely-eyed gaze into the future.
Watch the “Catch” Video –
Watch the “One By One” Video –
Pre-order Yesterday Is Gone –