HAILEY CRAMER – Hailey Cramer EP
(Hailey Cramer Music)
Suave songstress illuminates PETE WALSH’s emotional side with her incandescent release.
All right, let’s get the introductions aside. Who is Hailey Cramer? Having featured on Pez’s The Festival Song and collaborating with the likes of 360 and Blue King Brown, she’s become a quiet achiever on the Australian music scene. Hailey’s lack of fame belies her abilities — despite hardly being well-known, the songstress can certainly belt out a tune.
Stylistically, Hailey lies somewhere between Alicia Keys and Macy Gray: thin out the layers and the vocal pretentiousness of both, and you have yourself Burnt. There’s something genuinely attractive about independent women producing slick music with anti-misogynistic themes. The four-track EP is packed with soulful lyrics and vocals that rumble as a deep contralto or slide into a flawless, vibrato-laden soprano, conveying a raw emotional quality.
It’s incredibly refreshing when a CD only 14 minutes long can slip in such an eclectic variety of musical inspiration. Occasionally, sections feel a bit scat jazz-like — particularly when it comes to organic improvisation on handclap-friendly number Shoes. Cowbell escapades and inventive percussion sections are supported by well-lathered electro undertones, but none of this manages to steal the spotlight from Ms Cramer’s prodigious vocals. It’s these simplistic minimalist synth beats that tie the whole EP together.
PETE WALSH is an ex-Rave contributor and vagrant writer, a literati, music aficionado and coffee snob.