FEATURED ARTIST: Yabadum By Emma Markman Morris

This term, Xtreme Radio is proud to present our featured presenter reviews. Each week, a new presenter will show their music taste through an album review and a featured artist article. In her second article, Emma introduces you to an obscure, crazy, indie jazz band; Yabadum.

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Yabadum, a band straight out the dungeons of a jazz circus (actually New York but close enough), may be one of my favourite bands. Their name comes from that bit in a conversation where you’re kinda half paying attention and you say “yeah, but, um,” whilst trying to think of something clever to say. It consists of four highschool buddies, Charlie Schine on the keys/synth-maestro, Chris Rivera (rockin) on the electric guitar, Robby Jenkins on the drums/rhythm sticks, and Laszlo Horvath bass-ing up a storm whilst singing his dang heart out

Their first EP (going off spotify), released in 2014 whilst they were all still in high school, Careful Kid was what really got me into them, after hearing Cosmos on my Discover Weekly playlist. It has hints of this insane circus jazz, but is still pretty accessible if demonic indie music isn’t quite your thing right now. It’s made entirely of highly energetic tracks that make it so easy to sing along and dance to. They’re all fantastic songs – if I had to pick, Cosmos, Winter and Mountain Man would be my winners – but there are only six of them, leaving a run time of a short-but-sweet 27 minutes.

It would be early 2017 when they would finally rise from the dingy depths of the dungeon and make a wacky debut album titled Yabaum. Standing at 8 songs but 26 minutes it’s actually shorter than their original EP, but that doesn’t at all take away from its quality. It starts with a high synth and a slow beat in Too Many Times, the vocals distorted. It slowly becomes clearer throughout that they found an effects software and thought “oh heck”. The album doesn’t quite progress to complete madness, but they’ve definitely become a more prog-indie band over the years, and decided to experiment with their sounds a LOT. If Careful Kid was their gentle early teen anthem, then Yabaum is its punk cousin. Car Ad is noisy, but still melodic and almost poppy. They continue to warp their vocals and play around with synths on Tuesday Night and Did You Find Out. Big favourites of mine would be Everyone Is The Best! and the more electronic outro Plunk.

My only problem with them is how illusive they are. Their Instagram and Twitter accounts haven’t been active for over a year. You know they’re okay because their Facebook posts are about charity and asking to donate to good causes, more than about the band itself. In the end though, I can’t imagine a band who creeped into my life and made itself comfy nearly three years ago would be anything other than obscure. I can’t wait for them to release another album, and I don’t mind the wait.

Check out their first album on Spotify (https://open.spotify.com/album/4vHEgGjrVXeXmeUO0jVw8Z?si=keWOVnH9T3iSjxHz2J5CDw)  and Bandcamp (https://yabadum.bandcamp.com/album/careful-kid), and make sure you keep an eye on them. Who knows, one of the boys might post a selfie one day.

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Emma Markman Morris is a 3rd Year Maths student, Deputy Station Manager for Xtreme Radio, and presents a show on a Sunday afternoon with her co-presenter Kiera.

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