Geelong’s Zuma have dropped their debut EP

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Geelong’s Zuma have dropped their debut EP

Hands down my favourite part of my job is getting to cover up and coming bands before they get huge. That’s why I’m incredibly excited to introduce Zuma, the Geelong-raised, Melbourne-based quintet that’ll shortly redirect Melbourne’s psych scene.

If you are yet to come across Zuma (because I don’t know, maybe you hate going to gigs), I’ll give a brief introduction. Think of the synth-psych stylings of Pond, mixed with the vocal prowess of Beth Gibbons of Portishead. If that’s not enough for you to understand Zuma’s sound stop being lazy and go check them out, especially considering their debut self-titled EP is being released this Friday.

To find out more about the release, I caught up with the groups bass player, Jimmy Barjasic, to have a chat about all things Zuma. Speaking of the groups first single, ‘Flâneur’, he stated, “I think it was an obvious choice in the end.

“We had an immediate good feeling about it. I feel some of the other tracks on the EP have a bit more depth to them, so we thought as an initial taste that was a good indication of what we encapsulate as a band.”

Expanding on the overall tone of the EP he remarked, “In terms of a lot of the sonic tones on the EP, we have a lot of flanger effects and that sweeping shoegaze kind of vibe, so the EP is fairly coherent in an overall sense.

“Initially, we didn’t quite think the release had any lyrical theme, but having now finished it and look back at the songs we realise we were wrong,” he laughs, “the songs are primarily about feeling lost and helpless in life, and finding your direction as a result of that, which is something everyone in the band has felt at different points.”

Recording the EP themselves, Jimmy spoke of the freedoms that are opened up by embracing the DIY attitude. “It just means that you have control over the finished product. We are really into production and all the little adjustments that you can do, so having that control is very important for us.

“It’s sort of hard because you have these songs for so long that you’ve been slaving over so you kind of dislike them by the end, which means you lose all perspective on how they are as a song, especially considering we are very hyper-critical,” he continues, “Overall, we are very happy with the finished product. The work Sam Ford did mixing and mastering it was incredible as well.

“We wanted to get someone who we thought would understand our sound. We have been in the studio a few times over the last four years and we have worked with some producers who were great but didn’t quite get our sound. Sam has produced albums for bands like Pond before, so that was a huge reason we wanted to work with him and he was a very nice guy and took really well to responding to our demands.

“From what we could tell he seemed to really enjoy the songs, so hopefully next time around we will actually go over to Perth to record a single with him.”

Get down to Geelong Bandroom tonight (March 1) to see what all the fuss is about. In my eyes, Zuma won’t be playing cheap shows in Geelong for long so enjoy it while you can. Check out the event here.

Written by Alex Callan