The news of this album reached me shortly after Karen’s runaway success with Francois van Coke on Francois’ solo album with the song “Toe vind ek jou” (pushing 325 000 views on YouTube as I am writing this). Epic timing, if you ask me… Even better, she has since surpassed Francois’ album to take the number one spot for album downloads on iTunes in South Africa!
The album is called Drown Out The Noise, and these are the songs on it:
- Drown out the Noise.
- Secrets and Lies.
- Troublemaker. (with Zolani Mahola from Freshlyground.)
- We`re all gonna die Someday.
- Smile. (with Francois van Coke.)
- Where there`s a will.
- You can show it.
- Justice! Justice!
- People Never Learn.
These songs were written and recorded over an entire year, and we can be sure of her typical cleverly worded lyrics combined with soulful, honest vocals. Karen has never been one to beat around the bush when it comes to saying what she wants to say, so why should this album be any different? Man, I love this woman’s music! (Just had to put it in there (No, don’t make that joke now, I know what you’re thinking))
On the production side of things, Zoid teamed up with the legendary Theo Crous again, who is well known for his super-but-not-over-produced production skills.
I have been quite adamant about my stance that artists should shy away from full albums, and focus more on regular singles. However, Karen’s argument for a full album is rather compelling: “It will be sad if everyone just records singles. It doesn`t allow for a complete story to take shape.”
I hear what she’s saying. If you bring out an entire album, you have the opportunity to not only pop out great songs, but also to add meaning to those songs by making it part of a collective. The whole in this instance being greater than the sum of the parts thereof. A challenge indeed, but one I am sure that Karen Zoid, Queen of South African Rock, is more than capable of meeting.
Will this be the same Zoid I fell in love with back in 2001?
No, it won’t, and there was a time in my life when this fact would have saddened me.
I grew up, however, and realised that artists *gasp shock horror* need to do that too. I have learnt to appreciate not only the nostalgia old songs bring, but the depth new material can carry with it.
Karen Zoid is drowning out the noise with songs that say something, in a way that only she can. I look forward to hearing the entire album, and join The Zoid on this next stretch of her musical journey.
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