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Present Tense by Yumi Zouma

Yumi Zouma

Present Tense

Release Date: Mar 18, 2022

Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Electronic, Alternative Dance

Record label: Polyvinyl


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Album Review: Present Tense by Yumi Zouma

Great, Based on 4 Critics

The Line of Best Fit - 80
Based on rating 8/10

Twinning beachside ambience with simultaneously wistful and romantically directed lyrics, the New Zealand quartet have honed mood-shifting, pastel-hued soundscapes since their debut EP emerged eight years ago; hazy sonic seams that most recently powered Truth or Consequences. Deviating from previous electronic form, Present Tense tacks to a less rigid, more emotionally open-ended vein, veering from the ethereal spark that guided their initial work to polychromatic side quests. Where their third album coincided to the day with official confirmation of the global coronavirus spread, the follow-up finds itself framed by the ensuing logistical and psychological adjustments that followed in its wake; pre-pandemic penned lyrics adopting a fresh prescience, producing perhaps the most emotional variety seen under the Yumi Zouma banner so far.

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Under The Radar - 75
Based on rating 7.5/10

Present Tense, New Zealand quartet Yumi Zouma's fourth album, strives for an evolution rather than a revolution in terms of their overall sound. The band--who comprise of Josh Burgess (vocals, guitar), Charlie Ryder (guitar, bass, keys), Christie Simpson (vocals, keys), and Olivia Campion (drums)--embrace a more gradual step forward rather than take a huge sonic leap. After all, they aren't exactly renowned for their wild feral rock 'n' roll, so the shift is subtle rather than seismic. In spite of this, the band sounds energized, and it's difficult to listen to this album without thinking, "well, that was all rather lovely." A common problem with wall-to-wall loveliness is it could start to sound somewhat vanilla.

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Sputnikmusic - 74
Based on rating 3.7/5

introvert pop Present Tense feels like an awakening for Yumi Zouma. Not any kind of "woah, we're living in a simulation?!"-esque awakening, but rather one where the band fully open their eyes to witness a peaceful sunrise after an equally peaceful dream. Throughout their career, the New Zealand outfit have obscured sugary pop hooks in washed out synths and dream pop aesthetics.

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Clash Music
Opinion: Very Good

Gone is the sparkling and eminent alt-pop era of Yumi Zouma. Having been geographically separated as a band mid-tour in 2019, in the very wake of the pandemic, Yumi Zouma's fourth album arrives from a far more disconsolate place, embracing an anti-euphoria that tints each track with an opaque tenebrosity. 'Present Tense' is an amalgamate effort from the creative hubs of London, New York, Florence, Los Angeles, and New Zealand.

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