Zoë Phillips – Paralysed (2020)

After a runup of singles, Zoë Phillips has released her long-awaiting EP Paralysed. Inspired by the concept of being paralysed by indecision, the EP creates a sense of tension that perfectly reflects this. Through each track, she continuously builds the tension until it breaks. Highly relatable, the emotions of these times comes through in the vocal and guitar layering of the EP.

Phillips has been steadily making a name for herself with her previously released singles. They have gained the support of Radio 1’s BBC Introducing and landed a place in the iTunes Top 50 singer-songwriter charts. If you have not already fallen for her sounds, this EP is sure to hook you.

The EP starts with the title track ‘Paralysed’ which uses a light folk melody to get you into the vibe of the music. There is a soft undulation to the music that lets you flow down the melody. This combines with Phillips’ light vocals to great a sonic river you can float down. The lyrics build the scene of being paralysed by indecision and how you get to this place. It is the perfect start to the album both sonically and thematically.

‘Figured It All Out’ grips you with a piano line that leads to Phillips’ vocals. There is something ethereal about this song from the piano line to the tone of her voice. The pace of the track thrusts you into a soaring sensation as you feel like you are riding the thermals. While you soar, there is a thread in the track that seems to be keeping you grounded. This is artfully woven between the melody and vocals.

The opening of ‘Numb’ has this interesting combination of sounds that you can’t help but get hooked by. There are wavering notes and light wooden tones coming from the back. This flows into the vocals that have a melancholic tone to them. While the vocals have a sense of melancholy, the lyrics draw you to the light at the end of the tunnel. As the song progresses, you are filled with a sense of hope telling you that even if you are numb now things can get better.

‘Love is Gone’ hits you with Phillips’ vocals from the first moment resting on a piano line. There is a different tone to this song that completely changes the vibe. The beats of the melody get you moving to the increasing tempo. The lyrics tell an interesting story of love and the idea that you won’t wait forever. There are a few emotions threaded into this song that you get attached to.

The EP ends with ‘Hideaway’ which uses wavering tones and vocals to get your attention. Under the wavering tones are these plucky notes that give way to a haunting line. This in turn moves to pulsing tones that push at your ears. There are a lot of movements in this song that wrap around you and vie for your attention. While this happens, everything comes together to form an effortless single.

Zoë Phillips runs with the concept of being paralysed by indecision and turns it into a sonic journey with her EP Paralysed. Each track on the EP carries a unique thread while offering a step in the overall story and theme. There are a lot of swings in the melodies that highlight the musicality Phillips has to offer.

Find out more about Zoë Phillips on her website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Spotify.

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