A Review of the Zoe Mulford CD
"Roadside Saints"

"Roadside Saints"
by Zoe Mulford

Copyright 2006
Azalea City Recordings

This review is written by Kevin McCarthy, 5/06
"Kevin and Maxine’s Celtic & Folk Music CD Reviews"
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Although this is Zoe Mulford's second release, she is new to these ears. Fair or not, my 'rule of thumb' for new artists is this: the CD must contain a 'hit-the-replay-button' selection. And "Roadside Saints" easily passes the test.

"The Angel In The Storm" is destined to be one of those songs that never ages. It stands out because it simultaneously challenges and inspires like that of any great artistic creation that keeps on giving. It's a work that creates 'aliveness' within a listener like so many of the songs of the late Dave Carter--as good a compliment that can be offered.

But fear not that the impression be that Mulford is some sort of one-hit wonder. She opens the release with "Elegy (Crystal Glass)" a skillful depiction twining a family heirloom and the conflicting generational visions about life. "Gonna Wear Red Today" is snappy, containing passages that could also be called Carter-esque. "Our Lady Of The Highways," about an interstate feminine version of St. Christoper, contains this prayer-like chorus:

"...Blessed be the children and the strangers
We are all together, we are all alone
All the sleepless dreamers
all the restless angels
Bless all the wanderers far away from home..."

"Nobody Knocking" is a tale of justice swift and sure, edgily backed by violin but especially clawhammer banjo. About the many facades assumed to carry the mantle of a man, "Those Boys," contains this insightful chorus:

"...And oh, how the golden light fades to blue
Under the soft new down on their temples
their mothers' faces still show through
And oh, what they leave behind to count as men
and years will pass before they try
to find themselves again..."

The humerous "Stock" will be a definite inclusion for any DJs doing shows with a cooking or food theme.

Backed by violin and piano, Mulford closes with "The Earth And The Sky." Take this challenge: imagine you are listening to Lui Collins when you are listening to this one. You'll believe you are. The concluding verse:

"...So walk where you will, love
and go without fear
The earth has a heartbeat
you will always hear
May silence be music,
May strangers be friends
til the heavens turn round
and you come home again

With a pleasing, clear voice, Mulford is already an assured singer/songwriter knocking on the pantheon of greatness.

Track List:

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