Clara Mann makes almost-folk to keep calm in a busy world. The 19-year old newcomer made her striking debut in February this year with ‘Consolations’ (Sad Club Records) – an EP tipped on release for its wise-beyond-years approach, intimate production and distinctive, self-assured vocals. Preceded with tender first single ‘I Didn’t Know You Were Leaving Today’ and clear-cut follow-up track ‘Thoughtless’, the four-song collection observes her first meetings with adulthood; befriending vulnerability, protecting malleable boundaries, and the fragility of self that runs parallel with personal growth.
A keen painter, visual storytelling is embedded into Clara’s music, and during its incubation she found herself drawn further into the work of Edward Hopper; “maybe today I was the hunched figure from ‘Nighthawks’, tomorrow, the woman in the empty bedroom of ‘Morning Sun’. The pictures bled into the songs – the movie-still feeling, the muted colours.” In keeping with this romanticised nostalgia, Clara’s eyes serendipitously fell upon scores of Liszt’s ‘Consolations’ last summer, a piano series her mother used to play when she was young. Reminded of its comfort ringing throughout her childhood home in the south of France, it felt apt to mirror this and name the release by the notion with which Clara’s own writing provided her – to console.