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Landscape and memory have always played a central part in the music of Joe Corrales Jr. aka Yppah (pronounced “yippah”). It’s what gives his tunes their sense of place, their physicality, and their ethereal – almost nostalgic – sweetness. Drawing on a cultural heritage that took in My Bloody Valentine alongside hip hop and heavily influenced by various forms of electronic music, psychedelic soul and rock, his music often mixes guitars shoved through massive reverbs/delays, keyboards/synthesizers, live drums, and other techniques. Alluring, uplifting and imbued with natural, unaffected warmth that cuts through the most biting cold, Yppah’s music gives listeners an experience that is both rooted and revitalizing.
Yppah currently has three albums available on Ninja Tune; You Are Beautiful All The Time (2006), They Know What Ghost Know (2009), and Eighty One (2012).
His third album reflects a change in the landscape around him. Midway through the process of recording the demos for what became Eighty One, Corrales started making regular trips to Galveston, on the Texas Gulf coast, to surf. So energized was he by his experiences, he left his home in Texas and moved to Long Beach, California. Unsurprisingly then, he says that the images he had in his head as he made his new music were of the sea and the beach. “I wanted a lot of the songs to feel like a warm wash,” he explains. The record takes its title from the year Corrales was born and, perhaps the very act of moving away from childhood locales stirred up “memories from random times in my life. Like I was trying to recreate certain feelings I had at different points in my life with melodies, if that makes any sense.” And he goes on to ask, “You know how when you’re a child you feel your life has a certain melodic theme that you can’t really put your finger on and you can almost hear it, but it’s not anything you’ve ever heard before?” Eighty One is his attempt to capture those melodies.
Yppah is now performing material from Eighty One with a live band with rotating members sometimes featuring singer, producer and classically trained violinist, Anomie Belle.