Following shows with Swimming Tapes and Pottery and praise from outlets including DIY, Clash and Dork, Glaswegian indie-rockers Yakima are all set to release their debut EP. Recorded in a drafty old gatehouse next to a castle and produced by Benji Compston and Jon EE Allan of Happyness (who also plays on some of the songs), the EP tackles subjects ranging from Judy Garland’s insomnia to the existence of Japanese ‘cry rooms’ (a safe space that people visit to let all their emotions out).
Recent single ‘It Helped’ opens the EP with its Pavement-meets-Disq US college rock guitar hooks and a clattering of drums before the aforementioned ‘Judy’s Lament’ sways along with dreamy melodies and lyrics about being away for days and opening your eyes to the behaviour of others: ‘Is there a reason you’re ugly as sin? Now I know why people take it on the chin’. ‘Thanks’ is a woozier affair as the band make a plea for help as they try to resolve a difficult situation: ‘Everybody wants their own disease’; ‘When I know I’m wrong it’s hard to make amends’.
‘I’m Happy (In No Way)’ has melodic and self-depreciating sensibilities (‘You’re taking care of my love, always’; ‘I hope you value my love, always’) that hark back to ’80s Scottish indie bands like Orange Juice, The Pastels and even Aztec Camera before it turns up the fuzz in its final moments, while ‘Real Time’ has a more rhythmic opening that is paired with power pop chords, healthy doses of feedback and harmonious vocals – think Cymbals Eat Guitars with a dose of the producers’ eye for an earworm. The closing ‘Sheep Boy, Cry Man’ packs an emotional punch with its blissful and melodic sound – although this is again tinged with Elliott Smith-style sadness.
‘Go virtually’ (or, if you can, order the EP) to your streaming site of choice and wrap your ears around these six sublime songs.