Vermillion is ambitious, Vermillion is pop. It’s music from Brisbane, Queensland. It’s Clea’s debut.
On it her voice rolls through thoughts of love, desire and mundane life. In terms of sonics, she looks to pop’s symphonies. She came to music through Grizzly Bear and in a sense, it feels like Vermillion picks up from the smouldering reprise of Painted Ruins. Deep waters. Other influences the artist would proudly tell you she wears on her sleeve are Radiohead, Nick Drake and Peter Gabriel too.
As Clea’s statement progresses the threads come looser. Texture dissipates for sparing folk with ‘Teenager’. ‘Grey Area’ is looser rock. It precedes ‘Epilogue’, a moment which brings the carnival and theatre that’s swirling below this album’s surface directly to bear.
I am a conjurer
Vermillion is cool detachment. It’s dreaming and ambitious arrangement. It’s art that hits like the feeling of having three thoughts at once. There’s vision here, one with enough dramatic gesture and style to stay the listener between bliss points. This consistency gives space to ponder where in the two years between a cover of Tommy James & the Shondells’ ‘Crimson and Clover’ and ‘Dreaming’ this artist found a maturity so unexpected.
Vermillion is a record of stature and unravelling complexities. Clea, take a bow.
Words by Riley Fitzgerald