New Zealand outfit Yumi Zouma may have flown just under the radar for many in recent years, but they have always been on the productive side of things. The release of their new single “Mona Lisa” is a testament to their hard work making some of the most listenable indie-pop out there, falling straight into the pleasure centres of your brain. Of the new song guitarist/vocalist Josh Burgess explains:
“‘Mona Lisa’ came to us gradually over a long period of time so it’s story has changed and shifted, developing new relevance with each new phase of our lives. It’s a song that ruminates on conflicting, shifting uncertainty – of wanting someone that maybe you can’t have – of uncertain boundaries, of confusing interactions, misunderstanding, yearning. Trying to forget an obsession – or shifting between losing all hope and giving in to the obsession – lured back by the excitement and promise – the moments of feeling so alive. The terror and joy of a big crush.”
After just one listen to “Mona Lisa” you realise the band have titled it correctly: it captures that inbetween feeling that seems just a bit impenetrable. Is it happiness? Sadness? Or somewhere between the two? Like looking at Da Vinci’s renowned painting, one’s never quite sure what feeling Yumi Zouma are conjuring inside – only that it’s a good feeling. Managing to be both light as a feather and also feel like a weighted gulp at the back of your throat, the four piece make what sounds like light work of bringing intangible feelings to reality. Suffused with pastel bright guitars, reenergizing drum fills, and sunny touches of brass at the song’s end, “Mona Lisa” sounds like a track that has been swimming about in your head for years.