Great Sounds Great; Bad Sounds Bad: Yumi Zouma ‘The Brae’

Yumi Zouma

Great Sounds Great; Bad Sounds Bad is a column which sees a panel of writers for The Corner review a range of local singles and grade them out of 10. Check out the song below, read through their opinions and let us know in the comments section your own thoughts and what you’d like to see reviewed next time around.

[YouTube / Soundcloud]

[Grade: 7.6]

Stephen Clover: Effortlessly inoffensive and perfectly perfect for late-summer when the nights are no longer so long and there’s a chill on the edge of the evening. 10″ is my fetish format and I must get my hands on copy of this EP — already sold-out at source — so if I find out how I’ll let ya know. [7]

Hayden Currie: Nice. Starts sounding a tad twee and seriously déjà vu inducing at times, but ultimately pulls back enough to be enjoyable. [8]

Luke Jacobs: There not enough adjectives in this world for me to convey how much I love this song. It never missteps for me and there’s so much to hear that, when it finally fades away, I just want it to stick around a little bit longer.

There are so many moments like the final minute of the song that just feels so ‘right’. It just expresses something to me that is so special. This song actually means something to me. I cannot wait for more material from Yumi Zouma. [10]

Jon Turner: This is the first time I’ve heard of Yumi Zouma and it was a pleasant introduction. I can imagine this song becoming ‘big’ – not Lorde big, but bank commercial and an afternoon slot at Rhythm and Vines big. The pseudo country vocal phrasing is great, with reverb peppered throughout the verses and a nifty call and response synth line. I can imagine this song on a mid 2000’s compilation, nestled in between the Shins and ‘Young Folk,’ which isn’t a bad place to be at all. [7]

Gavin Coughlan: Every time I listen to this I can feel my eyelids getting heavy, my brain shutting down and the world disappearing as I enter the realm of unconsciousness, making Yumi Zouma one of the most literal dream pop acts out there. None of that is a negative, it’s an intensely pleasant track, and one that instantly made me seek out their impressive EP. The band have been blowing up on all the music sites that you would want to be blowing up on, so they are certainly travelling well even though they sounds so quintessentially New Zealand. If they manage to continue with this quality there is no reason why they won’t be entertaining kids dancing in blissful slow-motion during hazy late afternoon timeslots in summer festivals around the world. [7]

Chloe Cairncross: Lush, dreamy, lethargic…prepare yourself for all of these adjectives when reading about this track. Don’t get me wrong, it is charming in its own way. As I sit here, on this gorgeous Wellington Sunday morning, ‘The Brae’ fits in perfectly with my lazy mood. However, we are singling out one aspect of the band’s oeuvre and reducing it to a paragraph. In that sense, this track is forgettable in its quaintness. There is a certain magic potential with Yumi Zouma’s sound though and, with further listening, I would actually suggest you listen to the catchier ‘Sålka Gets Her Hopes Up’ off of the same eponymous EP instead of ‘The Brae’. ‘A Long Walk Home For Parted Lovers’ is more rewarding too. [7]

Nick Raven: The video has ruined this song for me. Its pointless, excruciatingly dull, and rather lazy. David Briggs once said “Be great or be gone” and the video has got to go. It does not do the song justice.

‘The Brae’ is a fine song itself. Complete with a retro esque 70s pop cover – isnt it funny how fashion comes and goes and comes around again.

I hear a river of Flying Nun influences spat out in a similar sound to that of the Drums first album. I prefer other songs from the EP such as ‘A Long Walk Home’and ‘Riquelme’. But its still groovin. [7]


  1. Luke Jacobs says:

    Is this the highest rated song so far? I’m pretty sure it is…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *