I learned about Zoe Muth when she first toured the east coast a couple of years back opening for Eilen Jewell (a performance from that tour can be heard here). Eilen has been an enthusiastic supporter of Zoe’s career, and I have thanked her more than once for introducing me to her music. I saw Zoe do two sets on that tour at Joe’s Pub in NYC and Club Helsinki in Hudson and was totally blown away by her heartbreaking voice, which strikes me as a cross between Patsy Cline and Iris Dement with some bluesy Gregg Allman world-weariness thrown in for good measure. She is one of the few young songwriters today working in a traditional country & western vein, yet her hard luck songs are distinctly her own and don’t come across as 2-dimensional or derivative.
Zoe moved from her native Seattle (she only sings like she’s from Texas) to Austin this past January, and drummer Greg Nies from her original band migrated south along with her. This tour finds her with a stripped down version of the Lost High Rollers with a lineup similar to Eilen Jewell’s band. While I missed the pedal steel and mandolin on some of her songs I soon came to appreciate the more spare instrumentation, which heavily features the tasteful licks of guitarist Eric Hisaw. And when Zoe is singing you really don’t want to hear too much else anyway!
Zoe mentioned she would be starting work on a new record soon, and if the two new songs she played at this show are any indication it’s gonna be another killer.
Zoe Muth – vocals, acoustic guitar
Eric Hisaw – electric and acoustic guitar
Gregory J. Amani Smith – Fender bass
Greg Nies – drums
1. You Only Believe Me When I’m Lying
2. Hard Luck Love
3. new lost high rollers
4. Mama Needs A Margarita
5. Country Blues
6. Come Inside
7. the elusive hotel swim
8. The Last Bus
9. live stream
10. If I Can’t Trust You With A Quarter (How Can I Trust You With My Heart)
11. Hey Little Darlin’
12. Before The Night Is Gone
13. Tired Worker’s Song
14. Not You
15. I Used To Call My Heart A Home
16. empty mic night at the bluebird
17. I’ve Been Gone
18. Maureen, Maureen
19. Walking The Line
20. Wasting My Time
21. The Running Kind
22. Waltz Of The Wayward Wind
23. Heart Like A Wheel
House mix by Matt Smith
Joyfully recorded by Keith from NY (email@example.com)
Gefell M200 (DIN, 10′ from stage 5′ right of center 8′ up) > Darktrain cables > Grace V3 @24/48 > Oade R-44 > PNY SDHC
SBD > Oade PMD661 @24/48 > PNY SDHC
cardreader > Reaper/Algorithmix Red PEQ/Voxengo Elephant (EQ, mixdown, compression) > Adobe Audition (edits, gain, fades) > Voxengo r8brain (resample) > Adobe Audition/iZotope Ozone (MBIT+ dither) > CD Wave (tracking)
Many thanks to Zoe and Matt for permission to tape the show.
Support the artist, go see Zoe play and buy her great CDs & stuff!