Lovely Yumi and the Weather we’re having aren’t we?
It seems like there is nothing but sunny skies forecast for Ruby Taylor, AKA Yumi and the Weather, a Brighton-based multi-talented instrumentalist who has perfected a distinct blend of galvanic, iridescent psych-pop and distorted, grunge-drenched, garage rock. She is back with her second album ‘It’s All In My Head’, an album four years in the making since her eponymous debut album in 2018.
Prepare to embark on an electronic-snared serpentine spiral of absonant guitar progressions and powerhouse riffs through Ruby’s brightest of highs and darkest of lows in this 10-track, authentic self-portrait. Covering everything from Ruby’s experience with sleep deprivation to getting sectioned, through the looking glass to sexual encounters and dark fantasies; Ruby has created an album of introspective, loud honesty which only enrichens the talent and creativity audible in this album.
Released on Friday 23rd September via Miohmi Records, the album opens with the tantalised ‘Imagine’ leads us into a discordant madhouse of an insanely synergistic fusion of Taylor’s beautifully dulcet vocals and the monstrous guitar riffs. The song is comprised of an instrumental composition strapped into a death-dropping rollercoaster, amplified by the blown-out speaker feel which infuses the track with that sugar-rush of rebellion.
And then when you think you know what to expect for the outro, the song slams on the emergency brakes and you are thrust forward into a dreamlike haze of romantic adagio. It was breath-taking to listen to how smoothly of a transition it was, from ‘mum-told-me-to-turn-the-music-down’ alt-rock to a radio appearance in the 1940s with resemblance to Kitty Kallen’s ‘Little Things Mean A Lot’. There is nothing I appreciate more than a professionally constructed blend of genres you wouldn’t have thought belonged together, but Yumi and the Weather saw the high bar and took a rainbow-sparking, flame-covered chainsaw to it. Chef’s kiss.
‘Hair is growing on my face / Hair is growing on my nose’
That isn’t a self-confession from yours truly, but it is the lyrics of the infectiously catchy, following track ‘Howl’. We are immediately thrust through the windshield into this fantastical world where the razor-sharp harmonies paint the scene of violent lunacy. The track encapsulates the frustrations of being repeatedly sectioned and the feeling of otherness which I feel a lot of people will just devour when they hear this descent down the rabbit hole.
The unapologetic dynamics, the aggressive string-ripping guitar riffs and heart-racing drums are struck by lightning until the most polished cadence I have heard in some time. The track ends in such a way that you feel as if you have just managed to stop your car from flying off a cliff. I love, love, love it!
It’s even more impressive when you realise this track and others in the album were almost entirely written, record, produced and performed by Ruby Taylor – Taylor saw the fast lane and said to herself ‘I can make a New Way’.
That brings us to Taylor’s ‘New Way’, and I was astonished as to how distinctly unique it stands against all already immensely innovation album.
With the intro, I heard a little sprinkle of The Police’s ‘Every Breath You Take’ with that hooking bass riff and my curiosity peaked immediately.
This song, slowing the tempo from ‘Howl’, is jam-packed with the flare of retro psych-pop, feeling like I am in the revamped kaleidoscope of that dream-like 80s sound.
This song has that visual charm of the people that stand against the walls at the back of the club, they are bathed in all of the same lights, but they are invisible still.
I feel like this song is the song that acts as deliverance for the purity and power of Taylor’s vocals. Her mellifluous harmony with the quaint bass is illuminated by the dichotomy it constructs against the andante drums, but it all blends perfectly to create a wonderland of dreamscapes to inspire all the creatives who hear it.
What can I say, this album is going straight into the playlist when it releases on the 23rd of September!
Now, time to binge Taylor’s ‘All You Can’ EP till then!
Till next time.
Yumi and The Weather’s Spotify:
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