Zoo Animal's 'Departure' EP streaming in advance of Nick and Eddie performance

Holly Newsom apparently didn't let the recent dissolution of the original Zoo Animal line-up affect her much creatively. She has just put the finishing touches on a brand new EP, Departure, an appropriately titled batch of stellar but subdued new songs. The EP has just been made available for fans to preview ahead of an eventual CD release show planned in February. But Zoo Animal have a more immediate show this Friday night at Nick and Eddie, which features a stellar quadruple-bill along with Fort Wilson Riot, Greycoats, and Village Industry. Newsom most likely will perform a few of these gorgeous new tracks at the show, giving fans a clear idea of the distinct new direction she is taking her sound in.

The seven-song EP is a studied, somber expression of Newsom's current state of mind, with most of the stark numbers built upon Holly's velvety vocals and delicate guitar strains, blended smoothly amidst minimal percussion flourishes and lovely, muted horns. It's a rich, poignant collection that highlights Newsom's growth as both a songwriter and a singer, with her warm vocals featured prominently in the mix, leaving the listener feeling like she's singing directly into your ear. The songs are indeed intimate and revealing, even with their true meaning shrouded in Newsom's elusive, penetrating lyrics.

Departure by ZooAnimal

What the inevitable future of Zoo Animal might be is surely a fluid work-in-progress, with Newsom understandably performing solo quite a bit towards the end of last year. Lately she has played with varying line-ups comprised of friends and frequent collaborators, giving some added breadth and texture to her songs. No matter what direction Newsom takes Zoo Animal, one thing is certain--with songs as strong as the ones found on Departure, her dedicated fans will continue to be listening and the spotlight on her will surely only grow, no matter who she shares the stage with.

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