SXSW Interview: Yumi Zouma

Party time people. That’s right, we are kicking off our SXSW coverage this week and really going into full on preview mode. As we tend to do every year, we will coming at you with a whole slew of interviews in the hopes you will appreciate the varied look on the festival. Today we have a new one answered by New Zealand founded, yet no longer based, Yumi Zouma. As always, hit the jump for full interview.

All answers come from guitarist Charlie Ryder.

ATH: Whats the name of the band/group? Where are you from?

CR: We are Yumi Zouma, from New Zealand.

ATH: Describe your groups sound.

CR: It varies because we all have slightly different influences. Olivia loves Jazz. Christie loves classic rock. Josh loves house. Charlie loves pop. With our powers combined we make something in between that could soundtrack your trip to a lake in the middle of the Southern Alps.

ATH: What was your most recent release? Any planned releases from 2020?

CR: We are releasing our third album Truth or Consequences on March 13th. Its our first album with our new label Polyvinyl Record Co. Our previous record was EP III in 2018.

ATH: For most SXSW sets, you get 30 minutes to leave a lasting impression. Whats your plan of attack? You have a set list mapped out yet?

CR: There’s no one-size-fits all plan of attack for the concert experience – every show is different, especially when youre playing at different times throughout the day, and both indoors and outdoors, like at SXSW.

ATH: Lets say your band has been booked an official showcase at a pop up venue somewhere in the middle of 6th street. The lineup features thrash metal, hip-hop, spoken word, and you. The sound is horrible, the lineup is not your style, and the crowd is growing ancy. How would your band deal with such a situation?

CR: It depends where were placed in the lineup if were on after the spoken word artist, we can roll with some more ambient tracks to start, if were coming on after the metal band, wed probably open with our more straightforward rock songs, and if its after the hip hop artist, Id imagine wed start with our more uptempo tracks. Bad sound can be an issue for a group with many electronic elements like us, but we can pare it back to a more chilled out and stripped-back vibe of guitar, bass, and drums if needs must!

ATH: There are tons of bands coming into town. Of the 1000+ bands coming into town, who would you ideally like to play with. Which band friends will be here?

CR: Were really excited to catch up with all of our long-time friends at the Cascine x Luminelle x Italians Do It Better showcase, to see the new Kiwi bands at the New Zealand Music Commission showcase, and to join all of our new labelmates at the Polyvinyl showcase (and to meet all the lovely people we’ve been working with at the label for the first time!)

ATH: What has everyone in the band been listening to, or, what plays in the tour van/car/bus?

CR: Charlie has been listening to the Radio Dept., Josh has been into Roddy Rich & Calvin Harris, Christie has been listening to The Japanese House & Westerman, and Olivia has been listening to Bat For Lashes & Broadcast.

ATH: Describe your perfect festival, real or not? Whos headlining? Wheres it take place? Etc.

CR: The perfect festival will be a festival to celebrate the introduction of mixed-member-proportional voting in the UK and US, and it would feature all of our favourite bands doing pure acoustic cover versions of everyone else on the lineup. Most importantly, the catering would be fantastic, the location would probably be in French Polynesia, and everyone’s families would be there.

ATH: Whats on the bands rider? If were bringing you food and booze, what can we bring you?

CR: Olivia loves Jack Daniels, Charlie loves acai bowls, Josh loves Club Mate, and Christie would definitely appreciate some ramen.

ATH: The band gets to create their own taco pop-up shop at SXSW? Whats the name, and what sort of tacos will you have? Any sides?

CR: Charlie would probably go with a diverse mix of plantain, spinach, and paneer cheese. Josh would have a vegan-friendly option, while Christie would have ramen tacos. Olivia would just have whatever tacos were available as long as they were doused in Jack Daniels.

Thanks again for making this time Charlie.

Yumi Zouma currently do not have finalized dates for the festival week, but we will share once we hear something. For now, enjoy their latest single “Cool for a Second”.

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