Worship and Tribute
Context is big in the world of music. Bands release albums all the time and some are better than others. Often an album taken out of context can seem monotonous or unimaginative, almost as if they were stuck in a time a machine. Outdated music by lost time travelers. This should be the case with London’s own Zoax and their newest album Is Everybody Listening, but thankfully, it is not.Playing the music they are playing can be seen as almost nostalgic or even as a tribute to those bands who made the same music almost a decade earlier. But once you listen a bit more, and get a bigger grasp on the music you see the potential. You see how bright their light is and where they are taking their brand of emotional hardcore. You can’t help but think to yourself “This band knows their past and is in process of writing their extremely bright future.
From the opening notes of “Lonely Souls,” the first full song on Is Everybody Listening– the first song “?” is an operatic entrance – you get a feel for what they are bringing to the table with their influences. Dueling guitars battle for dominance and and make way to an almost soul influenced verse. Dynamics are baked into this bands DNA. They have a firm grasp on song structure, musicianship and in the end, all the things that made that early 2000’s emo hardcore scene great.
“Click,” the albums third track, has the same kind of ebb and flow dynamic, the loud and the soft together, but what really shines here is Adam Carroll and his vocal delivery. He is able to bring the same frenetic energy while keeping his clean vocals on pitch and lyrical delivery on point. Dude’s got talent.
“Zero Point Seven,” the fourth track on Is Everybody Listening, is probably the steadiest tune on the album. Unlike the others, it keeps the train moving through till the end. Its insatiable groove fed by their drummer who, on most of the album, does an incredible job of making all the changes make sense. The guitar solo on this song is pretty much perfect. You couldn’t expect anything better in both subtlety and note choice.
Overall Is this EP perfect? No.. However it is a flag that alerts you that this band is coming. They did a great job. For what essentially is their second release, we should all be impressed.
Lets hope these lost time travelers never go back home.