Pop

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Music Reviews - Emily Ritchie

Peren­nial Vera Blue Mer­cury/UMA Whether it’s singing sul­try folk bal­lads or puls­ing pop tunes, Syd­ney singer-song­writer Celia Pavey re­mains stead­fastly ethe­real. Her del­i­cately soar­ing voice is un­touch­able. Out of this world. Peren­nial. From the first mo­ment she be­gan singing Si­mon and Gar­funkel’s Scar­bor­ough Fair in the blind au­di­tions of tele­vi­sion’s The Voice in 2013, it was clear the young mu­sic stu­dent had some­thing spe­cial.

Now, with her de­but re­lease un­der the stage name Vera Blue, the 23-year-old has emerged from the ashes of her tal­ent-show past. She sheds her folk-driven skin and em­braces a bold, elec­tronic pop sound­scape with which she so­lid­i­fies her sta­tus as an artist. The 12-track al­bum charts a per­sonal jour­ney through re­lat­able themes of heart­break and am­bi­tion, and en­gag­ingly ex­plores the blurred lines be­tween fan­tasy and re­al­ity, love and loss. The lyrics are in­tensely per­sonal, matched by so­phis­ti­cated song­writ­ing.

Pro­duc­ers Andy and Thom Mak (Boy & Bear, Win­ter­bourne, Ber­tie Black­man) mas­ter­fully com­bine softer, acous­tic tones with crisp, os­cil­lat­ing synths to create a palat­able and co­her­ent sonic can­vas. Opener First Week is a touch­ing slow build, Pri­vate is a boom­ing track that whirrs with elec­tronic chaos and Reg­u­lar Touch is a sin­gle ladies an­them, with ral­ly­ing cry “don’t need no­body that much, don’t need no reg­u­lar touch”. Lady Pow­ers is a fun fem­i­nist track com­plete with sleek beat and Mended cham­pi­ons Blue’s su­perb so­prano pipes, end­ing the re­lease with hope­ful vi­vac­ity. Peren­nial is a marvel­lous demon­stra­tion of the un­par­al­leled tal­ent of this young Aus­tralian artist.

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