[ Flying Nun / LP ]
Release Date: Friday 8 October 2021
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Flying Nun Records' latest signing, Vera Ellen, is a Wellington/Los Angeles based multi-instrumentalist and wildly prolific songwriter, who some may recognise from LA band Girl Friday (Hardly Art), or grungy NZ 4-piece Maple Syrup.
This 2021 Flying Nun debut was written over the space of a few years. Crafting post-punk and noise elements into something slightly sweeter, the album chronicles the highs and lows of Vera's early twenties. Each song hits an unforgettable, yet relatable, touch stone in Vera's life.
Vera Ellen is an expert when it comes to concise songwriting; every note and beat is exactly the required dose. It's Your Birthday is full of hooked-to-the-brim melodies, and guided by Vera's clear, confident, and relaxed vocal presence.
Vera had about 12 demos which she sent to her friends Dad, Mark Austin. In January of 2020, Vera and Mark recorded it over a couple of days with the help of some friends at Pyramid Club. Vera went back to America in February and that was sort of meant to be the end of it, but fortunately for the rest of us and due to the global pandemic, Vera ended up coming back to New Zealand and was able to add songs and extra instrumentation to the album throughout the year.
"If you can imagine, you're twenty years old and you write about some dreadful personal turmoil, and now you're twenty five and you think, let me just share that with everyone I know and a few strangers while we are at it. If I am honest, I'm a little terrified about having this record out in the world. It feels very exposing. At this point I may as well become a nudist."
It's Your Birthday is Vera's gift to the world, but Vera wants to be the kind of uncle that always shows up with a gift on your birthday, so it shan't be the last.
1. Always Always
2. Telegram 2
3. It's Your Birthday
4. Yuppie Farm
6. Crack The Whip
7. It's Good, It's Simple
8. I Want 2 B Boy
9. The Language of Flowers
11. Stuck w Me
12. Heart in Reaction
13. Where The Sun