Yumi Zouma – Where The Light Used To Lay, Song of the Day

Yumi Zouma announces today’s premiere of Where The Light Used To Lay, the latest single from their eagerly awaited new album, Present Tense, and announce a tour.

Mōrena folks, today’s song of the dayYumi Zouma is brought to you by Yumi Zouma. Where The Light Used To Lay is the first single on their forthcoming album Present Tense. Here is the whole media blurb.

International alt-pop band Yumi Zouma announces today’s premiere of Where The Light Used To Lay, the latest single from their eagerly awaited new album, Present Tense. The poignant track arrives alongside the second in a mesmerizing trilogy of official music videos directed by filmmaker Alex Ross Perry (Her SmellListen up Philip), premiering today. Present Tense arrives via Polyvinyl on Friday, March 18; pre-orders are available now.

 “Where The Light Used To Lay eventually revealed itself as a bittersweet song about the agony of detangling your life as you break up and the enticing future, clarity, and lightness that the end of the tunnel can offer.” says co-founder/multi-instrumentalist Josh Burgess. “When we first started writing the song in 2019, we were all in long-term relationships. By the time the final mix was completed in the Fall of 2021, only one of those remained (thanks COVID). It’s funny how songs can end up revealing themselves in surprising ways, even to their writers. They’re equal parts confronting and calming, knowing that the subconscious starts processing long before the conscious comes to it. Regardless, it’s nice to have a moment with a song where you go ‘damn, ain’t that the truth.’”

The New Zealand-born band’s fourth studio album, Present Tense was first heralded by the rousing In The Eyes Of Our Love, available now at all DSPs and streaming services. Its official music video, Part I in the trilogy directed by filmmaker Perry, is streaming now. The track was met by high praise from such outlets as Stereogum, which declared it “a soft but propulsive pop song with some serious melodic hooks” and “a worthy entry in Yumi Zouma’s growing catalogue and in the rich history of New Zealand indie-pop.


Yumi Zouma will celebrate Present Tense with an epic world tour, including a North American run beginning April 7 at Atlanta, GA’s Terminal West and then continuing through early May. Special guests include NoSo (April 7-15), JORDANN (April 16-17), Mini Trees (April 18-25), Noble Oak (April 28), and Beauty Queen (April 29-May 6). For ticket availability and additional information, please visit yumizouma.com.

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Dedicated to an embattled past, Present Tense is Yumi Zouma’s offering to a tenuous future. The album follows 2020’s acclaimed Truth or Consequences, released via Polyvinyl on the very same day that the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic. The band had only just embarked on the first sold-out North American tour when the world shut down and the four members of Yumi Zouma went their separate ways and returned to their respective homes in Wellington, Christchurch, London, and New York.

It was disorientating,” says co-founder and multi-instrumentalist Charlie Ryder. “We generally work at a quick clip and average about a record a year, but with no foreseeable plans, we lost our momentum.

In response, Yumi Zouma set to work, declaring a September 1, 2021, deadline for the album needed to be finished, regardless of world events. What began in fits and starts became a committed practice again as the band worked on new material, digging through demos from as early as 2018 and making them relevant to the peculiar moment in time.

Someone brings in a seed,” says co-founder and multi-instrumentalist Josh Burgess, “and through collaboration, it grows into a song that is vastly different from its original form.
The lyrics on these songs feel like premonitions, in some regards,” says lead singer/keyboardist Christie Simpson. “So much has changed for us, both personally and as a band, that things I wrote because the words sounded good together now speak to me in ways I didn’t anticipate.

Present Tense evolved via remote and in-person sessions in Wellington, Florence, New York, Los Angeles, and London, its sound developed and broadened by pedal steel, pianos, saxophones, woodwinds, and strings played by friends around the globe. The complex scope of the recordings was then fine-tuned by an array of top mixers, including Ash Workman (Christine & The Queens, Metronomy), Kenny Gilmore (Weyes Blood, Julia Holter), and Jake Aron (Grizzly Bear, Chairlift), with mastering by Antoine Chabert (Daft Punk, Charlotte Gainsbourg).

This is our fourth album, so we wanted to pivot slightly, create more extreme versions of songs,” Ryder says. “Working with other artists helped with that and took us far outside of our normal comfort zone.
Yumi Zouma first revealed Present Tense with last fall’s debut of Give It Hell. Inspired by the band’s experience at the start of the pandemic, the track was met by critical applause around the world, with NME praising it as “luminous…a cruisy, lighthearted synth-pop number driven by bright, ‘80s pop-channelling keyboards, and a vocal performance that is restrained, but emotive and evocative.

Mona Lisa arrived before year’s end, joined by a self-directed official music video filmed in Lyttleton, New Zealand – a stone’s throw south of the band’s hometown of Christchurch. “Mirroring the nostalgic, cinematic pop of Give It Hell, the band’s latest is as textured as it melodic,” wrote NME, “its final, soaring refrain culminating with a freewheeling saxophone solo.” “The second instalment of a triumphant return,” declared HAPPY“‘Mona Lisa’ is alive with pop textures and effortless melodic sophistication… expertly distilled into a pop song that you won’t forget anytime soon.

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