The Sydney party scene is about to get whole lot louder. Not even the lockout laws can clamp down on this flourishing collective. When you think of YEAH NAH YEAH, it won’t just be an apathetic response with regards to life choices, but you’ll think about this new wave of Sydney creatives bringing you jangly psychedelic jams and mad parties that will rock your socks off.
Founded by AJ The Aged One, Diggesy, Dives, Ellis Wigmore, Jermango Dreaming, and Ripped Jeans, YEAH NAH YEAH is a label formed by six mates showcasing their own various psych, garage and hip hop projects. Along with that, they also enjoy working closely with visual artists in Sydney to bring the music and art worlds together, allowing them to experiment within the local artistic community. This forms the basis for their parties and makes for unpredictably good times.
Meet Sydney’s newest purveyors of DIY psych, garage and hip-hop, killer mixtapes and raucous parties, YEAH NAH YEAH. Part label, part creative collective, they are hell-bent on fighting the good fight and keeping Sydney’s creative juices flowing.
The label have put together a compilation of tracks that flaunt the abundance of talent that resides within the collective. The mixtape consists of solo work, band projects, and collaborations between the members of the label. Transportive DIY tunes with raw finishes, each song within this mixtape is a culmination of all the hard work these guys have put into achieving their passion.
The work is reminiscent of Nicholas Allbrook, who is an undeniable influencer in modern Australian psych music. Sometimes more prominent than others, each tune within the mixtape possesses a psychedelic element which is often transportive.
Along with this mixtape, we also had the chance to have little chat with the guys. Here’s what they have to say about the label and their trajectory, and their recent launch party:
HAPPY: So I understand that the label was founded by six of you guys, just wondering if I could get a little intro on who each of you are and what are your respective roles within the label? Also, fun facts would be appreciated.
YEAH NAH YEAH: We’re all pretty hands on with everything that’s happening at the moment, from label management and A&R to merch, to managing the warehouse parties etc – we’re all doing our bit to get things up and running. Most importantly we’re all contributing musically to this label as it’s a collaboration for us. So in between the label stuff we’re all working on different musical projects, either solo or band stuff.
J plays in King Colour and has his own garage rap project called AJ The Aged One. He also makes fragrances for a living. Diggesy plays in King Colour and SCK CHX, and writes cruisey soulful tunes under his own name. He was fortunate enough to touch Iggy Pop’s sweaty bod at the age of 16. Dives drums for King Colour and fronts SCK CHX, and makes garagey shoe-gaze solo stuff. He had a mildly-successful YouTube channel in year 7 called drumpro712.
Liam fronts King Colour and writes synthy soul jams. He wants to open an ice creamery that sells only lemon sorbet. Jermaine makes psych pop tunes under Jermango Dreaming and was able to grow a beard as early as year 7. And Andy plays in SCK CHX with Dives and Diggesy. He used to be one of those dudes that picked up golf balls at a driving range in Homebush.
HAPPY: How did YEAH NAH YEAH begin? What was the process like building towards the launch of the label?
YEAH NAH YEAH: The six of us have been close mates since leaving school, and we’ve grown closer together through our mutual appreciation for psych, garage, hip hop, punk, soul, etc. We’re all constantly jamming, writing and recording stuff together so there’s quite an overlap of members in the projects. The idea of the label formed just over a year ago when we all had the idea of throwing a party with live music that also encompassed a whole bunch of art mediums with our mates and called it YEAH NAH YEAH. So we had a projection artist, a live-body painting artist and various gallery pieces around the venue and sets from King Colour and our mates Sures.
We threw our last party in a warehouse in Redfern and had around 350 people show up, it was mental. The success of the parties has really encouraged us to work together to get our music out there as a label. The process leading up to the launch has definitely been challenging, but so important for us to go through as musicians who want to release music in such a difficult and complex industry.
HAPPY: Why did you guys decide that you wanted to start your own label?
YEAH NAH YEAH: We’re really into Flightless, Golf Wang, Spinning Top, Milk! Records, and other cool label / collectives out there, and love how there seems to be a real sense of community and collaboration between artists on those labels. We vibe off that comradery that you get between bands when they have some of the same members, or they produce or remix each other’s tracks. When they tour together the shows are always more rowdy too. For us, working together as a label to produce, promote and release our own music just makes sense because we all have the same vision really. Make cool music and get it out there. Or have fun trying.
HAPPY: From the press release, it says that you guys are more focused towards showcasing psych, garage, and hip hop music. Is there are reason why you guys have leaned towards these genres of music?
YEAH NAH YEAH: We really just froth on those genres really. Musically we’re all trying to explore them in our own different ways and create new ideas. We’re all open-minded when it comes to genre though. What we’re really into is music that can take you somewhere else, music that carries you into another headspace. Psychedelic music is particularly concerned with that transportive notion.
HAPPY: Along with this interview, we’re also premiering the label’s first mixtape. How exciting! On the website it says that the mixtape features contributions from every member of YEAH NAH YEAH. By every member, do you mean all of the artists that have been signed to the label? Are you guys (the founders) part of the artists contributing to the mixtape as well?
YEAH NAH YEAH: Yew! Yes, us founders are all members in the various projects on YEAH NAH YEAH. This first mixtape is a great way for us to introduce the different sounds we have growing in the YEAH NAH YEAH family. There are a few different flavours in there. The tracks are all DIY and are intended to be fairly raw. We’ll be releasing a fresh mixtape to coincide with the warehouse parties every month or so. We’re also super excited to roll out some killer official releases for King Colour and SCK CHX in the next few months, stay tuned.
HAPPY: Could you tell us a little bit about the artists you have on the label at the moment? How did you go about discovering new acts and recruiting them for the label?
YEAH NAH YEAH: At this point in time, all the artists aligned with the label are personal projects of ours. Some are collaborations and some are solo projects. Once we all feel like a particular project is ready and sounding smoking we’ll throw it out there for the world to see. That’s an exciting prospect for us because it means we always have each other’s support when we’re experimenting with new ideas in our own projects. We’re definitely not going to rule out finding acts outside our circle eventually, but for now we’re focusing on developing our current acts and throwing mad parties. You can expect plenty of music, YEAH NAH YEAH events and even some tours later in the year. We’re gonna be some busy dudes for a while!