Anyone who follows the local music scene will have encountered Zoe Mead at some point or another. She has been a regular fixture in our venues for some time now, first in her band Anchor & The Wolf, more recently as part of Old Colours, and frequently alongside Shaun Buswell in Buswell. Blessed with a voice that cuts like crystal, has layers of emotion and yet can still pack a punch she is one of those singers who is instantly recognisable. It is not just her singing that marks her out from the crowd either; she is a prolific songwriter and has penned some outrageously beautiful pop songs and she is also a multi-instrumentalist of some talent too – it is almost enough to go off her!
Sadly her last band Old Colours called it a day earlier this year, finding the geographical distance that had grown between the band members too tough to overcome. This was a great shame, as they had climbed a good distance up the greasy pole of the industry, playing big festivals, supporting big acts and recording an incredible EP with Sam Bates at The Ladder Factory studio. The songs on this EP were unmistakeable, unique and breathtakingly beautiful. What’s more, the band were able to capture this magic live and really make the music come alive. I miss them already.
Luckily, Zoe doesn’t waste time, and is back in the saddle with a new project – Wildest Dreams, who debut at The Victoria tonight. Whilst still featuring all the dreamy melodies of her previous bands, this new solo work has taken some of the brakes off her and pushes things to the next level, putting her in the company of acts like Wild Nothing, Beach House, Warpaint and a raft of bands from the 4AD label 20 years ago like Throwing Muses, Belly and The Breeders. There is a warm fuzzy DIY ethic to the tunes I have heard so far that makes the thought of hearing them live rather an exciting one, especially as this is unrealised until now as a live project. Tonight at The Victoria is going to be very special indeed!