David joins us on your Monday morning to offer up his review of the debut Vera Blue album ‘Perennial’. Turns out, he rather likes it.
Every so often, someone from one of the talent shows here in Australia manages to cut through and gain favour with the music buying public, critics and radio.
It’s taken Celia Pavey (now known by her stage name Vera Blue) four years to get to that point, but now she’s arrived with gusto.
Her album ‘Perennial’ is a lush, heartbreaking and beautifully written body of work about the aftermath of a relationship breakdown. It’s the nugget of emotional pain that just keeps on giving.
First and foremost, Celia’s delivery of her songs is one that is real, raw and considered. Her natural preference to deliver a folk-influenced performance ends up being brilliantly paired with the electronic beats scattered throughout the album. Working with Andy and Thomas Mak almost exclusively across the album offers a consistency often lacking on albums nowadays.
‘First Week’ is a heartbreaking opener about those immediate moments after a relationship ends. Celia and her writers capture every confusing emotion you’d expect to feel post-breakup in an honest way. The arrangements are designed to lift you from the gloom with some very Florence & The Machine-esque organ work.
‘We Used To’ channels some intense Kate Bush vibes with a powerful performance. Celia sounds absolutely incredible; her vocals soaring above all the lush strings, harmonies and driving rhythms. In the final moments of the song, it builds to an intense crescendo which leaves the listener feeling every single emotion she’s felt. This is my favourite moment on the album.
It’s hard not to ignore ‘Lady Powers’. Sure, it’s a very modern take on a “girl power” anthem, but I think it’s just how cutting edge it sounds like that captures my attention. This song has major single potential the world over and was picked up by our friends at Popjustice in the UK as a song of the week. It would be a crime not to release it as a single because it just gets stuck in your head.
I love hearing homegrown talent create epic moments and it’s evident we are experiencing the emergence of a modern pop star in Vera Blue.
Pop albums don’t get much better than this and it’s easily a contender for album of the year.
VERDICT : 5/5.
MUST LISTEN : First Week, We Used To, Lady Powers.