ALBUM: The Great Escape
Their album’s title is reminiscent of Gwen Stefani’s “The Sweet Escape,” which was released in December 2006, but the band Claire’s inaugural album got its name from a specific mission that they’ve outlined on almost every track. The group released a biography under their band name alongside the album to explain where their sound and message come from. “Music is always about escape…” it begins. The ten paragraphs which follow detail how the adversities of life are inevitable, but fortunately, there are escapes “from the everyday madness of life itself, whose challenging nature we often only feel strong enough to face when we have a considerate, musical companion of sound and lyrics at our side,” (“Claire”). A musical security blanket is exactly what Claire has devised, as the group seeks to provide their listeners with a soundtrack to life to help face, accept, and move away from the hardships we encounter every day. Full of real-life and highly relatable instances made into metaphor, (“feisty sparks from extinct blaze,” for instance) their lyrical content both connects them to their fans and opens the minds of their listeners to brighter perspectives.
They send a message that is seemingly natural and without angle, but the group didn’t exactly emerge organically. A duo of synthetic production, Messel (Matthais) Hauck and Nepomuk Heller originally worked together in a studio in Munich just a few years ago. Guitarist, Florian (Flo) Kiermaier, connected with the DJ’ing duo and their instantaneous chemistry fueled their desire to make music together. Although they were inspired to begin creating music together, one missing element halted their music making; They knew they needed a vocalist to complete the “Claire-fecta,” so their search began. Kiermaier, the newest member, called to mind the talents of a young Josie Claire Burke who was “an old party acquaintance.”
Claire's first project was a low-key musical production for a film, “a favor to a friend”, but the group felt the potential they had together, and they harnessed it; “We knew we wanted to do more in this constellation". This self-recognition of worthiness accelerated Claire’s career, and gave the group a creed by which to make their music. Easily relatable stories and their ability to level with the everyman emotionally opens The Great Escape up to an endless sea of followers. Though the videos accompanying their music are mostly sepia colored and full of frolicking in the sun, there are moments of “meaningful stares into the middle distance that interrupt the frolics and hint at the sadness beneath the surface,” layering their tunes with a respectable amount of contemplative and intellectual depth.
“I contacted her over Facebook and asked if she wanted to come by,” Kiermaier explains, “When she started to sing, we all just looked at each other and thought: Awesome! This is it!”
“Claire’s debut album is a musical exclamation mark signifying the end of pop music arbitrariness, and setting an escape route which will become the new starting point. For music. For Pop. For Claire.”