Portland, Portland

The Night We Floated Away with Yumi Zouma

Colette Pomerleau / July 12, 2016
Yumi Zouma. Photo: Colette Pomerleau.
Yumi Zouma. Photo: Colette Pomerleau.

There are few songs and even fewer artists who have the ability to put me in a severe dream haze like New Zealand-based Yumi Zouma. I was first captivated by their single “the Brae” a couple of years back. Though frequently described as “80’s revivalists” and “swoon music”, I think there’s a lot more than that. The four members have scattered the globe since the earthquake in Christchurch and have been “fractured, locked in a struggle to be whole. Unlike Christchurch, where residents still live amidst rubble and have accepted a degree of chaos as a daily fact of life, Yumi Zouma presents a glistening surface to the world.”

Yumi Zouma. Photo: Colette Pomerleau.
Yumi Zouma. Photo: Colette Pomerleau.

Last Thursday night, they glistened and headlined Holocene with Azul Toga and Calm Candy. The audience mostly refused to move and stared back with awe. Lead singer Christie Simpson moved enough to her own. The room became a circling haze during “Remember You At All” and my old favorite, “the Brae”. Simpson’s vocals glide over the simple but intentional melodies in a way that give you the feeling you’re rollerskating through cotton candy fields.

Yumi Zouma. Photo: Colette Pomerleau.
Yumi Zouma. Photo: Colette Pomerleau.
Yumi Zouma. Photo: Colette Pomerleau.
Yumi Zouma. Photo: Colette Pomerleau.

You should stream Yumi Zouma’s debut LP, Yoncalla, below.

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