Given that walking out ones own front door is dangerous business these days, it’s no surprise that countless musicians have spent this year creating output within the confines of their own homes. 2020 has very much been the year of the bedroom project, and as a result, we’ve seen an outpouring of amateur work plagued with the flaws associated with such a practice. However, not all work created in isolation has been lacklustre, far from it in fact. Across the world, a near endless amount of creatives have utilised ingenuity, creativity and flexibility to create home-cooked work that gleams with excellence. One such act that fits mostly into this category is the alt-pop project Yumi And The Weather, something they showcase with their new EP Some Days.
Initially being forged into creation with just an old laptop, a well worn pair of headphones and a fingerprint peppered midi-keyboard, Some Days found it’s origin during lockdown where frontwoman Ruby Taylor herself in an endless limbo. Birthed from the paramount anxiety and fear that was – and still is – hanging within the air of the nation, the EP resonates a level of comfort and relaxation across it’s five respective tracks. It very much is the sound of a musician creating art to banish the unending fear that’s become synonymous with this accursed year, but as the fluorescent neon synths of ‘No More’ awash over oneself, it’s nigh on impossible to feel fearful when experiencing this EP. Taylor’s featherweight vocals flow delicately over the ethereal synth-pop textures in a way that’s relaxing yet urgent, romantically retro yet distinctively modern.
Yumi And The Weather’s 2018 self-titled debut showcased the band taking heavy influence from pop titans such as A-Ha and Fleetwood Mac, and this release continues in this vein throughly. The ditsy indie riffs of ‘The More I Hear The Less I Believe’ and the sauntering lazy string solos of ‘I Will Never Know’ harken straight back to the halcyon 20th century golden days of alluring indie pop, with the former track resonating the same outsider romanticism associated with The Cure and even the New Romantics movement of the 80’s.
This EP is not a piece of work simply fawning over a passed age though. As Taylor and her bandmates offer weave tales of escapism, the unit bathe within the dreamy and ethereal indie tones highly enjoyed by artists such as Dream Wife, Beach House and even hefty dream-grunge label mates Bitch Falcon, As proven with the near outrun aesthetic and swelling harmony of ‘What Will Become Of The Wishing Well’, Yumi And The Weather have taken the stylised allure of the past and reimagined it for the modern age. Their influences may be transparent, but with indie-synth swatches as alluring as these, it’s hard to criticise the way they heavy handily borrow from their inspirations.
Throughout all of this however, such calming and ethereal ambience is infused with a tangibly cosy and comforting aura, one stemming from the EP’s DIY production. Whilst many acts cooking up art at home go to great lengths to expel the bedroom project feel, the group have opted to embrace this homely feel. Through a lo-fi production, this EP is warm and inviting, a welcome escape from the chaos of modern living. Granted, this may be too forced in the case of the intentionally distant ‘Just This One Thing’, a track that meanders through a lo-fi fog, but in all the EP is dreamy as it is inclusively inviting. Through banishing turmoil Yumi And The Gang have created not just an an idyllic platform for escapism, but a fantastic entry point for newcomers and a refreshing teaser for next year’s full length.