A few years back, my partner and I went to go see Yumi Zouma in San Francisco.
In retrospect, the sound at the show wasn’t great, but it’s still an endearing and sweet memory. We’d fought a few nights before and bailed on plans we had to go see the Oh Sees, and the Yumi Zouma show was the first chance we had to reconcile and apologize to each other.
Somewhere between the dreamy synths and Christie’s soft vocals, we ended up swaying on the dance floor, whispering apologies and appreciation for one another under the soft purple lights. In retrospect, maybe it’s more of a bittersweet memory, but all I remember are the warm lights and holding hands to the soothing lull of the soft synths.
Sometimes we go on long drives and the playlist always seems to land on Yumi Zouma. He’ll play me their newest songs and tell me all of his favorite things about their sound, while I try hard to keep my eyes on the road, stealing glances to see the way his face lights up when he talks about the things he likes.
Truth and Consequences feels like one big long drive along the coast, past beaches and rolling hills, sometimes cheerful, sometimes moody, and always dreamy. Throughout the album, there’s this sense of wistfulness and nostalgia in their sound. Songs like “Right Track / Wrong Man” and “Magazine Bay” are tinged with sad lyrics hiding in a groove, that pull you in and get your head bopping. Then songs like “Cool for A Second” and “Southwark” pull you right back out into a daydream, gentle and soft like a summer breeze.
“Truth and Consequences feels like one big long drive along the coast, past beaches and rolling hills, sometimes cheerful, sometimes moody, and always dreamy.”
Yumi Zouma has struck the delicate balance of bright pop songs that, at first listen, sound like shimmering daydreams, but are lyrically a little melancholic and heartbreaking. I can’t really put my finger on it, but it feels like being a little bit sad even when you’re happy, like hurting and healing at the same time, or when you’re not really sure if you’re crying or laughing, if that makes sense. I highly recommend a listen to anyone who needs an escapist daydream from the social distancing purgatory we’re all presently living in.
Reina Shinohara is a law student in San Francisco and writes about music sometimes. She’s a Libra and can’t decide on anything (even what to put in this bio).