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ZOE from Earth - The Sun EP (becoming music)

6 July 2024

Breaking new ground in music becomes increasingly difficult. Sure, new technologies open up new sonic pastures for the modern artist, but these advancements also mean that more people are now making music, so the competition is steeper, and the new ground to be broken becomes even more limited.

So it is great to come across artists like ZOE from Earth someone who, as her latest ep, The Sun, demonstrates unequivocally that there are still new places to explore and new sonic landscapes to be mapped.

Okay, there is some precedent for her sound; the discerning music fan will hear touches of the likes of Tori Amos, Bat For Lashes, and perhaps even the quiet majesty of Kate Bush, but those are just reference points. ZOE might be a travelling companion for such luminaries, but she is still beating out her own path, dancing to her own delicate drum.

There is a moment in “Horizon” when she asks, “What are you waiting for?” as she does so, the main riff manifests, wraps itself around this sonic flurry, and becomes a second voice in the asking. It was then that I realized that this is a very clever artist indeed, able to do so much with, often, such small amounts of music.

The title track is a gorgeous ebb and flow between intimate whispers and emploring anthemic, and the EP’s swansong, “This Too Shall Pass,” feels like a snapshot of everything that has gone before on the record, able to move between almost empty spaces and more ornate sounds, between understatement and crescendo, between folk delicacy and shamanic sonic rituals, walking between dreamscape and drifting sonics.

The Sun is a fantastic collection of songs if indeed they are songs. Perhaps they are musical experiments, sonic explorations or even emotions put into a different form. Whatever they are and however ZOE from Earth does it, the world is a much better place for them being in it.