Ethereal electropop group Yumi Zouma began in 2013 as a home-recording venture by three friends in Christchurch, New Zealand.
After sharing files with the Cascine
record label out of Brooklyn, they were invited to join its roster and prepared their first release, the four-track EP I. Issued in early 2014, the record was quickly embraced by the blogosphere, selling through multiple vinyl pressings and leading to a collaboration with influence Air France
, the by then disbanded neo-disco duo. The pair lent new vocals to Yumi Zouma's cover of their final single, "It Feels Good to Be Around You," before original lead singer Kim Pflaum left the group and was replaced by Christie Simpson. By the time EP II arrived in 2015, Yumi Zouma had performed in Australia, the U.K., France, Canada, both coasts of the U.S., and across New Zealand, where they opened for Lorde
. With bandmembers relocating to New York, Auckland, and Paris, they recorded their full-length debut, Yoncalla, while together on tour. Featuring the lineup of Simpson, Josh Burgess, Sam Perry, and Charlie Ryder, it was released in May 2016, also on Cascine
. Later that year, the foursome traveled home to New Zealand to start work on a new album. Recorded in Christchurch at a studio located on one of the few blocks of the central business district that wasn't demolished by a series of earthquakes in 2010 and 2011, Willowbank was a more relaxed take on the electropop of their debut. It was released by Cascine
in late 2017. ~ Marcy Donelson, Rovi