Album Review: Yumi and the System – Wonders of Origin

Yumi and the System
Wonders of Origin

After recently reviewing the single ‘Day of the Tiger’ by these guys, I was sent across their album for me to have a listen to a review as well. The album has been out for a month or so now but if you have not yet heard of these guys or had a chance to listen to the album then you really should because ‘Wonders of Origin’ really is a great listen.

The album opens suddenly with distorted, echoey vocals giving a Shirley Manson vibe on ‘Back of the World’. Guitars are spiky, fuzzy and almost dangerous with their edgy and reverberating sound. This is a great track to open on; instantly catching your attention and making you want to carry on listening. Next song ‘The Garden’ is set in complete contrast as electronic beats, deep fuzzy bass and hushed, muffled vocals all create a wonderful ambience while swirling electronics litter this with interesting elements yet the whole thing manages to stay sparse and flowing.

Single ‘Day of the Tiger’ is a clear highlight with dank riffs and vocals that master the line between rock star authority and a lethargic, nonchalant attitude. The grungy guitars and murky bass lines are mixed with swirling guitars that squeal, a steady rhythm from the drums and intermittent electronic sounds.

Dirty riffs, big drums and sensual sounds open ‘Record On’ whose vocals are slowed adding to the sexy undertone, this is old school rock and roll at its best set against oscillating electronics making for an excellent track. While pulsating bass and drawn out backing vocals create a dreamlike atmosphere on ‘It Isn’t Over’; this is built upon with guitar strums that are left to fade and a main vocal that sounds far away like the inner monologue in your head.

‘Sunburnt Black’ sees more of the drawn out sounds, echoey vocals and a dreamlike atmosphere set starkly against harsh synths while a steady drum and a harmonious vocal open ‘Beautiful Souls’ before a high pitched guitar riff rings round your ears towards the end at a frequency surely nearly too high for human hearing.

Towards the end of the album we see the use of more electronics on tracks like ‘More Air’ with its strong voice, screeching guitar, loud, commanding electronic beats and fast paced catchy chorus that in the live setting would seeing plenty of singing, clapping and stamping along to the rhythm. On ‘Mama Says’ there is a dark edge present from strong sounds: echoing vocals, wobbling notes and buzzing sounds, quieter break down moments where vocals take precedence and muffled chords.

Final track ‘Cheers’ sees guitar strums build cumulating in cymbal crashes and constant beats. This gives way to soft keys and gentle vocals that are instantly thrown to the side once the choruses return with those opening notes and huge soaring vocals giving an epic edge to this. Here, like with many others on the album, you get to hear the emotions and personal stories that are strewn throughout this making it a listen of beautiful, heart-rending tales.

This is a very good album showcasing an abundance of great musicality from the use of their many influences from the world of pop, rock, indie and dance, be it 80’s dirty rock, 90’s grunge or modern day pop. This is easily one of my favourite releases of 2014 and I can see this duo and their wonderful sound going very far.

Check out the single ‘Day of the Tiger’ below:

To find out more about Yumi and the System visit their website, their Facebook page or you can follow them on Twitter – @yumitweets

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