We love Yumi Zouma, like properly love Yumi Zouma. Their debut EP was probably the most played release of 2014 at Alphabet Bands HQ and their follow up single “Alena” (as well as their love letter to Air France) has been played to death since its release. They are, for us, one of the bands of the year and we fully expect more of the same in the next 12 months.
In fact, such is our adoration for the New Zealand trio that we find ourselves surprised that they have not been talked about more in other year-end review and new-year preview lists. Almost to the extent that we have questioned the legitimacy of including them here ourselves? Did we miss a trick this time last year and they were actually all over the 2014 previews or is it more that the EP was released at the start of this year and people have forgotten them? Whatever the reason is, we don’t care. It’s our site and we think they are utterly fantastic and will continue to write about them whenever we can (spoiler alert, they will be featuring again before the end of this year – year end lists are coming after all).
We’ve talked before about the EP, about how the melodies drift effortlessly like a row boat on a still summer lake, about how the vocals drip gently like perspiration on an ice cold beer and how the whole thing is idyllic and heavenly. We’ve talked about it but it is worth re-iterating, it’s like swimming to the edge of a perfect temperature infinity pool and bathing in the breathtaking vista of melody before you.
Their live performances are wonderful as well, “Alena” hinted at a slightly more up-tempo yet still languid disco pop sound and their gigs certainly embrace that aesthetic.
The songs feel more alive, more upbeat and full of verve as the band and audience bounce and bob enthusiastically together and they even start to sound and feel a little sexy, what with the low lighting and aural seduction of their bewitching sound.
A second EP is due in 2015 and hopefully there will be an album as well. If they carry on being as amazing as their initial releases have shown, there will certainly be more love from us.