ZOE single review by Vince Leigh
Australian singer-songwriter ZOE has released the lead track, Fire, off her upcoming debut EP, Sun. The song makes an honest effort to probe some weighty topics and, for the most part, succeeds admirably.
Zoe’s vocals are self-assured yet tinged with fragility
The song’s governing force, ZOE’s vocal and the delivery and reinforcement of her lyric, are kept in the spotlight by lush pads that cushion a surge of melodic inventiveness, alchemizing reverbs, and a slow-build rhythm accompaniment. With lines like ‘I know all that you are / And you know we’re made of the same star’ and ‘I know all that you are inside and you know / That we’re formed of the same fire,’ the imagery effectively employs the elemental and frames them within the context of the intimate.
ZOE’s vocal approach, which is self-assured yet also tinged with fragility, works when coupled to the sonic backdrop, providing a type of melancholic grandness brought down to earth. ‘The song talks about fire as the essence of humanity, our inner energy,’ ZOE explains of her new single. ‘It’s a song that kind of wants you to get through all the bullshit and materialism and then go, what is left now? What’s really important? The answer to those questions is really what the song is getting at.’
What inspires her?
After two years of touring Australia, ZOE finally recorded the song in the songwriter’s home state of Western Australia (Kalbarri) on a 10-date tour. When asked what inspires her, the singer-songwriter says, ‘The best things about being alive on Earth. The worst of it. Everything. I adore the vivid spectrum of reality, and also the un-imagined. I think what inspires me most is what people don’t think is possible. Finding what that impossible looks like and finding out how to make it appear possible.’
Fire is essentially an incredibly robust slice of indie-pop, a scenario that could be described as Adele meeting Lana Del Rey, and it should be sufficient to establish some respectable support for the singer-songwriter.