yOya – The Bloom

On July 20th yOya will be releasing their second full-length album. The album is called Half Turn and it will be available via New Professor Music. Fans of the Los Angeles-based band will wonder if the Coke-bottle-green vinyl is a tribute to the band’s home state of Oregon. Who can say? What we do know is the new single for “The Bloom” just dropped and it’s worth spending time with.

The band’s debut album, Nothing To Die, was a driven collection of breezy pop and damn-near perfect melodies. There was an exuberance to the collection that carried an undeniable friendliness – the kind of stuff that doesn’t typically do well in a world that likes to remind itself that being jaded holds a certain kind of currency. There was a wide-eye openness to yOya’s debut. It was refreshing, and bold in it’s unguarded approach to sharing.

“The Bloom” continues the warm-hearted spirit of songwriting partners Alex Pfender and Noah Dietterich. It’s hard to think of a more explicitly optimistic title for a track. This thing truly opens things up. Strummed acoustic guitars, enchanting electronic blees, and a splashy percussive track, all form a foundation for the jubilant vocals. “I’m waiting on the Blooo-oooo-oooo-oooo-oooom!” Of course, to be waiting on a flower to open means that our narrator is in a less-than-perfect state of apprehension. He admits his obsession, but he looks forward. It’s reassuring to hear an optimistic song that captures the nature of optimism. There has to be darkness. Maybe the bloom will never open. But faith continues. Content and form are blended well. For all the lightness of touch, and ease of access, this is not disposable stuff. It’s great.

The video, directed by Zach Johnston, is a departure from previous yOya offerings. There’s more of the band here, and less of the abstract shapes that they once employed. They scroll through the empty social feeds on their phones, they pedal a bike that could have been parked by Sisyphus – it goes nowhere. The thing is heavy with metaphor – but at it’s heart the piece is about friendship, and the promise of something being something more important than the reality of realization. It’s what drives us.

The intention of yOya, equally, is applaudable.  They have positioned themselves, once again, firmly in pop – but with an adult approach to serving their truth. If Half Turn furthers the promise of their debut, and delivers more of “The Bloom” their summer should be sound.




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